Youth Work Ireland have a long and distinguished record of speaking outh with and on behalf of young people, and those who work with them. We believe that this view of our duty to advocate with and for young people and their rights distinguished our model and approach to youth work. In more recent years we have promoted a greater role for unmediated voices of young people direcly in our advocacy work. Our work in this area is informed by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and best practice for those over 18. We recognise the different layers in our organisation and the need for advocacy work to reflect these and the work we do in our communities every day.
Youth Work Ireland has launched an online poster campaign calling for a Yes Vote in the referendum on reducing the age for presidential candidates. We believe the second referendum on the age to be a candidate for President has received no real attention from amongst the political establishment. Our Campaign will consist of a number of online posters highlighting the caliber and ability of several under 35s who could not be candidates currently using the hashtag “#not2young”. The organisation emphasizes it has no money to spend on campaigning.
Saturday April 20, The Mansion House, Dublin
Youth Work Ireland facilitated a Children’s and Young Peoples Constitutional Convention in April 2013. As the selection method for participatiion in the National Constitutional Convention Committee excluded young people, we felt that the voices of young people needed to be heard in this important matter.
Our Constitutional Convention meeting took place in the Mansion House, on Saturday April 20th as part of Youth Work Ireland Week and was chaired by Tom Arnold. At the end of this event Tom Arnold invited the Voices of Youth group to attend the national meeting of the Constitutional Convention and give their feedback.
A Voices of Youth and Youth Work Ireland Event, February 2014
This event brought together young people from across the country to express their views on the rights of students and rules in their schools. They looked at topics ranging from uniforms, hair and make up to ensuring that school rules change with the times and connect with the lives of young people.
Feedback was collected from young people working in four different workshops during the day and there was a Questions and Answers session at the end with experts such as the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, The Equality Authority and The Children’s Rights Alliance” said Joanna Siewerska (17) co-chair of the events.