Tramore, the seaside resort town where nearForm is based and where CEO Cian grew up, and Waterford, CTO Richard’s home city, are places that are core to the history of nearForm. Cian and Richard are deeply committed to maintaining strong ties with the local community, especially aspects of it that they themselves were involved with in their younger years.
One of the guys’ aims when they set up nearForm was to give something back to the area where they grew up. As part of fulfilling this aim, nearForm has recently pledged an annual contribution to Waterford Youth Arts (WYA). WYA is recognised nationally as one of the country’s leading youth arts organizations, with over 400 young people taking part in its activities each week. It is a well known and much loved organization that has been a key part of the Waterford arts scene since its founding in 1985. Richard was a member of the organization’s youth drama group, Waterford Youth Drama, as a teenager.
By sponsoring WYA, nearForm wants to help ensure that the non-profit organization can continue its incredible work with young people in the Waterford and Tramore area for many years to come.
WYA’s artistic director, Ollie Breslin, has been a key figure in the arts in Waterford for several years. He has been at the helm of WYA right from the start. Ollie says: “Richard says that the confidence he got from doing drama and other activities with WYA has stood to him. He says he wouldn’t be able to stand in front of a conference and give a talk unless he got that kind of help when he was younger. When I hear him saying that he wanted to set up a business in the Waterford area, it gave me a shot in the arm.”
Ollie is keenly aware of the powerful combination that is business and arts. “Business people who are interested in the arts are few and far between. These people are really important to Waterford’s arts scene.”