Ireland Reaching Out (Ireland XO) is a volunteer-based, non-profit initiative which builds vibrant, lasting links between the global Irish Diaspora and parishes of origin in Ireland.
The programme is based on a simple idea; reverse genealogy. Instead of waiting for people of Irish descent to trace their roots, Ireland XO volunteers worldwide are networking with people of Irish descent in their local areas, helping to build bridges between the present and the past by connecting people with the home parishes of their ancestors.
Since 2009, Ireland Reaching Out (Ireland XO) has helped thousands of Irish people discover the history of their families and reconnect with their parish of origin. Whether you have emigrated recently or have never been to Ireland, we welcome Irish people from all over the world and those who share an affinity for our rich and varied cultural heritage. We are a community with no geographical boundaries, connected first through bonds of people and place, and then developed through our shared celebration of culture and friendship, both online and offline.
Of the estimated 70 million people of Irish descent living outside of Ireland today, many are unsure of where in Ireland they originate from, or if there are any living relatives still there. We aim to help these people discover the story of their family history and reconnect them with the Ireland of today.
"Thank you for providing this website. It is THE only place where a kind person responded to one of my posts with the absolutely crucial piece of information I needed in order to search further. I have been looking for that tidbit of info for 14 years!!! So, Ireland XO is definitely making a difference in Irish genealogy research efforts."
Ireland XO member from USA, July 2015.
The Ireland XO website is run almost entirely by local Ireland Reaching Out groups. Queries on our message board are answered by people in the actual locality – ensuring that if they don’t know the answer, they probably know somebody, who knows somebody who does!
Learn more about how the programme started
Ireland Reaching Out is a non-profit, volunteer, and community-based Organisation. In the past we have received funding from the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade, The Heritage Council , and Google Inc. Alison currently sponsors the maintance of our website.
Our main reveneue stream comes from Google Adsense and public donations . This means Google will place advertisements on the website and Ireland Reaching Out will earn a small fee when someone visiting the website clicks on one of these ads. There is no cost to website visitors, as clicking on an ad is completely free to them, and any revenue earned from this will be reinvested in the maintenance and growth of the Ireland Reaching Out programme.