YOUNG people from throughout Co Kildare gathered on Wednesday last 23 October for the Comhairle na nÓg AGM for 2019 which took place in the Westgrove Hotel in Clane.
The event was organised entirely by young people themselves. The main theme of this year’s AGM was focused on young people’s mental health and what steps they can take to promote and maintain positive mental health.
Comhairli na nÓg are forums for young people aged 12-17 where they can identify and work on issues of importance to them, before engaging with key local decision-makers in a bid to achieve their desired outcome, impact or change. The Comhairle na nÓg AGM is one of the first steps in that process, bringing together young people from throughout the county to identify and prioritise these topics of importance. Kildare Comhairle na nÓg is supported by Kildare Youth Services with funding and support from Kildare County Council.
During the Co. Kildare AGM, approximately 160 young people from schools, youth projects and youth clubs across Kildare participated in a workshop which helped their peers to understand the positive steps they can take around managing their own mental health as well as outlining where they can go if they need additional support.
The comhairle produced a brochure incorprating a five-a-day test to encourage positive mental health and wellbeing.
The five steps encourages young people to spend time connecting with friends, family and the people around them.
The second step is to include exercise in your day, whether it be walking, running, cycling or sports. Step three encourages the young people to spend 10 quiet minutes each day reflecting on the day that your having.
The fifth step enourages generosity. Look for opportunities to give your time to others. Small acts of kindness go a long way for everyone.
The following young people are the elected members of the Kildare Comhairle na nÓg County Panel:
Aaron Hackett, Ryan McKeown (Clane), Liam Boland, Callum Jackson, Hannah Moloney (Leixlip), Oana Anastase, Matthew Morrin (Naas), Niamh Wall, Adam Doyle, Cole Higgins (The Curragh), Leanne Behan, Leanne Walsh, Jake O’Brien (Kildare Town), Cassie Kavanagh, Mary Wilson Reilly (Newbridge), Rosie Byrne, Dylan Hayes, Yvonne Farrell (Celbridge), Jack Donoghue, Evan Pereira, Cormac Delamere (Athy).
Comhairli na nÓg are local ‘Youth Councils’ designed to give children and Young People the ‘right to have his or her voice heard’ by being involved in the development of local services and policies. There is a Comhairle na nÓg in each of the local authority areas. The Department of Children and Youth Affairs funds and oversees Comhairle na nÓg, the delivery of which is the responsibility of each local authority. In Kildare, the departments funding is channelled through the county council.