Ciara Kenny

The Irish Times forum by and for Irish citizens living overseas,

Following the progress of a group of emigrants in 2014

We’ll be following them as they prepare to go, settle into their new homes and make new lives abroad

Adrian Gallagher with his wife Emer and sons Cian (6) and Luke (10) at their home in Co Sligo. ‘It is a lot to leave behind: my wife, kids, house and the life I’ve built up.’

Fri, Jan 24, 2014, 10:51


The Irish economy may be gradually improving, but for very many Irish people, career and lifestyle opportunities are still much better abroad. Although the Economic and Social Research Institute has predicted that emigration levels may have begun to fall slightly, it is likely that the numbers leaving Ireland will remain high for several years to come.

This year, The Irish Times will be following a group of emigrants as they go through the process of leaving Ireland for a new life overseas. Starting in the newspaper and online today, we will be charting their progress as they prepare to go, say their goodbyes, settle into their new homes and go about making a new life for themselves elsewhere.

With Irish people of all ages, occupations and social backgrounds currently leaving the country, it is almost impossible to select a “representative sample” of the current generation of emigrants. But the six individuals and families participating in this project give some sense of their diversity; their feelings about the move are as broad-ranging as their reasons for leaving in the first place, either out of choice or necessity.

They include a carpenter leaving his wife and children for work in Alberta, a graduate speech therapist going to work for the NHS, a young family moving to Brisbane in search of a better lifestyle, an unemployed 20-something going to Sydney for work, a couple moving to San Francisco for better career opportunities and a insurance broker going to Toronto in search of adventure.

Read the first interviews about their reasons for leaving in the Life pages of The Irish Times today, with a few lovely videos by Bryan O’Brien and Kathleen Harris.