References for the school presentations of the Director of Dialogue Ireland,
To Whom It May Concern,
Mike Garde of Dialogue Ireland has been speaking in my school for about 10 years now. Over this time the religion department have always found him to be efficient, reliable, flexible and accommodating in his arrangements with us. With regard to the students he has a commanding presence and an ease with public speaking which keeps their attention on his presentations. In general Mike would speak to a group of 60 sixth years and seems to have no difficulty with discipline or engaging with the students in debate. In fact Mike always includes elements of student involvement and interaction to maintain their interest and to
illustrate his points more effectively.
Mike's knowledge and expertise in the area of cults and new
religious movements is unquestionable. Each year he presents new information, new perspectives and new developments in these areas. He is also very helpful to the teachers with recommendations for sources and contacts on a variety of topics. In particular he keeps us notified of events and matters of interest connected to Dialogue Ireland. I am happy to recommend Mike as a speaker to senior cycle students.
Salesian High school
Sept 1st 2009.
To whom it may concern.
I am writing this from Swaziland, in Southern Africa where I now minister.
Some years ago I taught in Salesian College Pallaskenry, Co Limerick and invited Mike Garde to do a workshop with the senior forms on Cults.
Mike is a hive of information in his chosen field and has huge experience in dealing with various cult groups operating in Ireland.
With senior students leaving second level and entering third level, there is always a danger of recruitment taking place in the early weeks away from safe home environment.
Mike was able to give pointers to our sixth form students on what to look out for, who were operating in third level and their methodologies of recruitment.
I would recommend Mike to you as a useful resource to bring to your school during the year.
I brought him to talk to my religious education classes.
Fr Martin McCormack s.d.b.
Malahide Community School,
20 October 2009.
To whom it may concern,
I would like to recommend the work ‘Dialogue Ireland’ has undertaken in secondary schools over the past twenty years in Senior Cycle Religion. Mike Garde, an expert in Cult Movements and New Age Religions, delivers an excellent workshop for Senior students. He has been a stalwart in our Senior Cycle programme here in Malahide for many years. He has addressed groups in single or combined classes. His approach is to challenge students from ‘where they are at’ and of whatever denomination they may come from. He allows students to address ‘real’ issues in terms of belief and practise. The approach Mike takes challenges students both academically and spiritually. He manages to impress on his audience the need for reflection on their core beliefs. Students who have encountered Mike have realised the importance of facing up to the ‘reality’ of faith issues. While he instils in them a need to address their own personal issues, he manages to impart great wisdom and understanding of the ‘real’ issues facing teenagers in an age of secularism.
The Senior Cycle Programme in Religion, which has been running in Malahide Community School for many years, lends itself to both exam and non-exam classes in Senior Cycle Religion. Mike Garde has been a pivotal part of our programme since its inception. From year to year teachers may change the format or emphasise particular themes, but Mike has always been at the forefront of our planning and implementation of the Senior Cycle programme. From our experience of his very successful lectures/workshops, I am confident that he will be of great benefit to your students.
Mr. Kevin Manning (teacher)