Local teens were part of international youth event

Two teenagers from Streamstown joined with 128 other teens from this country, the USA, Azerbaijan and Northern Ireland for a virtual youth conference last week.

Gráinne Kelly and Adam Kelly gathered virtually online for for Foróige’s Leadership for Life Youth Conference.

The event, which was launched on Monday of last week via Zoom, aimed at helping teenagers to learn how to become leaders in their own lives. During the week-long conference the teens learned crucial life skills such as empathy, decision making, communication skills, critical thinking and team-work.

The 130 delegates, aged 15-18, graduated from a module of the Foróige Leadership for Life Programme on Friday and now have the opportunity to continue their leadership development journey by completing the three-module programme and receive a university recognised qualification in Youth Leadership and Community Action from NUI Galway.

As part of the week-long conference, the delegates met with inspirational guest speakers such as Keith Barry – the mentalist, hypnotist, magician and activist for the elderly, and Senator Lynn Ruane - an independent senator serving in Seanad Éireann, a former President of Trinity College Dublin's Students' Union and a lifelong activist.

Seán Campbell, CEO of Foróige, said “Now more than ever before, young people are stepping up and leading the way. The Leadership for Life programme enables young people to develop the skills, inspiration, vision, confidence, and action plans to be effective leaders.

The Foróige Leadership for Life Programme was developed in Ireland in 2009 and is open to young adults aged 15-18. Delegates attending have been nominated by youth workers and volunteer leaders from their own countries because they have demonstrated an innate sense of justice, determination, passion and ability to lead and make positive changes in their own communities.