The benefits of IPA Placement Programme – by Michał Sługocki, IPA Poland

Last October along with my fellow police officer Dariusz Barczyński from Jelenia Góra we had a fantastic opportunity to spend eleven days in Ireland.

It was planned and carried out thanks to IPA Placement Programme.

After landing at Dublin Airport we got picked up by uniformed Garda patrol who brought us to IPA House in Dublin.

We stayed in the Capital for three days and it was time  for exploring the city and visiting.

Thanks to local An Garda Siochana officers we had an interesting tour in Government building, and we also wandered around Court Houses.

We were also taken to Garda facilities to learn about the specificity of service in An Garda Siochana.

In one of the evenings we met with a group of Polish members of IPA Ireland, all  working on different posts in Garda, to exchange experience and compare policing in two countries.

On day four, thanks to a member of IPA Hiking Club Siobhan Ni Firbhisigh, we could admire a picturesque sights during a hike to Tory Hill. In the afternoon we headed to Kilkenny, where had the honour to meet IPA Ireland President Conor O’Higgins.

Mr President gave us a tour around town and told about town’s history. In the evening we enjoyed a night life in Kilkenny, as we got a Chance to visit several pubs with live music and taste some of the local beer.

Next day we went to Birr, where they met Grace Heffernan, IPA Ireland member who we hosted in Poland.

She showed us around Garda Station in Birr, where we met Superintendent Patrick O’Callaghan and IPA Ireland Secretary General Carlo Griffin.

Later we enjoyed beautiful gardens in Birr Castle. After that we headed for a trip to Tullamore and a visited a whiskey distillery Tullamore Dew.

In the evening we spent some time with local Garda officers and discussed police work over few pints.

On day six we were back to Dublin where we visited Guinness Storehouse and enjoyed the panoramic view of Dublin from the Gravity Bar. After that it was time to watch some game at the Aviva Stadium.

Before the match we could observe the briefing of Garda officers securing the soccer game between Ireland and Wales. 

 In the morning of day seven, Carlo Griffin took us to Irish West Coast, to Galway, where we stayed at IPA Apartment.

After an interesting tour around town with John O’Brien, we met IPA Ireland Vice President Michael Walsh, who showed us around one of the Garda stations in Galway.

In The evening, over a pint of Guinness, we were honoured with a membership in IPA Guinness Forum.

Next day we visited Garda College in Templemore, where we had the pleasure to meet with Chief Superintendent, had a tour around College facilities, and observed Garda Students practicing their foot drill.

The evening was an occasion for Garda Students to talk with us about the police work in Poland and the differences in training programme.

Another day in Templemore we spent on a hiking trip to Devil’s Bit and even the rain did not stop us from reaching the top. After a tiring day we met with members of IPA Ireland Gemma Grogan and Chris Verling.

Day ten was with Grace Heffernan who took us to a game of hurling and we could enjoy the dynamics of the fastest team sport in the world. Later we went to Birr, where we spent a nice last evening before returning home.

In the morning Grace drove us to Dublin, where, before boarding a plane, we enjoyed ourselves visiting Teelings Whiskey Distillery. 

It’s needless to say that the time spent in Ireland on IPA Placement Programme was a great adventure for us, which we will surely remember, as it was not only a chance to watch and learn about police work in a different country and to observe how IPA functions and is organized, but also, and mainly, a time spent on making new acquaintances and tightening the cooperation between two countries.

Servo per Amikeco!

Michał Sługocki, IPA Wrocław, Region Lower Silesia, Poland.

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