Five Westmeath volunteers were in attendance at the informative and interactive Foroige annual conference which took place in Hotel Kilkenny at the weekend.
James Murray, Jean McManus, Ciara Farrell, Dawn Fanning and Darren Egan were amongst the large numbers who ventured to the three day conference at which the continuing progressive work of Ireland’s leading youth organisation was detailed.
Foróige has over 5,500 volunteers working in its 600 youth clubs, 160 projects and programmes such as the Aldi Foróige Youth Citizenship Programme, Leadership for Life, Be Healthy Be Happy and Entrepreneurship. They are instrumental to Foróige’s engagement with over 50,000 young people, or one in ten Irish teenagers, year on year.
This was the 48th annual Foróige volunteer conference and the delegates enjoyed a variety of guest speakers, workshops and the exchange ideas on best practice in youth work.
Chairperson of the National Council of Foróige, David O’Reilly, speaking at the conference remarked “Foróige volunteers are extremely special. They are thoroughly dedicated to providing young people with opportunities which will empower them to reach their full potential in a safe and understanding space.
“Without our army of 5500 volunteers a gapping hole would exist in youth work in Ireland and I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every volunteer who braves the winter nights, becomes a mentor, and empowers Ireland’s young people to believe in their own potential.
“Last year volunteers in Foróige gifted almost 400,000 hours to help support and develop young people the length and breadth of Ireland. This type of commitment doesn’t just happen, it must be co-ordinated and given the support it deserves.”