Galway broadcast to over 500,000 Kiwis as New Zealand broadcaster explores Irish ancestry

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Darragh Walshe, Tourism Ireland; New Zealand broadcaster Mel Homer; and chef-owner of Kāi Restaurant in Galway, Jess Murphy, after broadcasting Homer’s Sunday Café radio show from Kāi Restaurant. Pic – Finn Pilcher

New Zealand broadcaster Mel Homer has been visiting Galway and Ireland to continue her journey exploring her Irish ancestry.

Homer – who hosts a popular radio show called Sunday Café on New Zealand’s Today FM – began tracing her Irish ancestry here in 2019.

She returned to Ireland recently to continue uncovering her Irish roots and her visit was supported by Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland.

Homer travelled to Kāi Restaurant in Galway (which takes its name from the Māori word for food) to broadcast her Sunday Café show. She interviewed its chef-owner, New Zealand-born Jess Murphy.

Homer also broadcast from Brooks Hotel in Dublin, where listeners heard her interview a number of Irish-based personalities with connections to New Zealand.

She visited the Irish Family History Centre and then followed her mother’s ancestral ties to Nenagh.

As well as Homer’s Sunday Café broadcasts, her time in Ireland is being documented across several channels – including an article for the New Zealand Herald which will be published in early 2023, a series of podcasts, and on her social platforms – reaching a combined audience of over 560,000 people across New Zealand.

Darragh Walshe, Tourism Ireland New Zealand, said that Tourism Ireland was delighted to support Mel Homer’s recent visit to Ireland, as she continued to trace her Irish ancestry.

“Her journey is being documented across multiple platforms – including broadcast, print and social media – reaching her audience of over 560,000 listeners, readers and followers across New Zealand and inspiring them to put Ireland on their holiday ‘wish list’ for 2023.”