Catholic Grandparents’ Association event to tackle issues affecting young people

The Catholic Grandparents’ Association is hosting a social gathering in the Castlecourt Hotel, Westport, on May 8. The event is open to the public and there is no admission fee.

The guest speaker on the evening is Fr Benny McHale and he will be addressing issues affecting young people and offering coping strategies to help deal with the many and varied concerns which they face on a daily basis.

The cyber world is for most parents and grandparents an unknown place and somewhere they are hesitant to visit. Fr McHale is well acquainted with young people through his many years of giving school retreats and counselling.

This is a very important evening and the first grandparents’ gathering of its kind.

The discussion is under the heading copability not capability, with the following points to be explored: Children cannot cope with life anymore, they develop a sense of entitlement. The impact of technology on their minds - technology taking over their minds, they are unable to think outside the box. Sexuality - young people having sexual experiences at an age that is inappropriate. Breakdown of family. The number of children in broken families and broken homes resulting in a lack of security which is a most basic need. Drink and drugs - children turning to those to find happiness that it can never give them. Suicide - why are so many young people wanting to die? Seven hundred suicides in Ireland last year, three times the number of people killed on the roads. Entitlement - children feel they are entitled to everything. It is the legacy of the Celtic Tiger, and life is not like that as they will find out when they get older. How can grandparents help? Grandparents can talk in a way that parents cannot. They have a unique bond of trust and love. Children often see their parents as the common enemy. Religious education - grannies and grandads are able to talk to their grandchildren in a way that parents cannot.

This will be an interactive evening between a panel and the floor.

The guest singer is James Kilbane who will entertain with songs of faith and inspiration. The choir of the Sacred Heart School, Westport, will provide a musical interlude with some old and new songs.

For any questions or further information contact Paul Murphy on 087 235 0472, Catherine Wiley on 087 288 2008, or the Catholic Grandparents’ Association on 098 24877.

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