Monday 5 December 2016

Young people advised to volunteer and pursue their passions in life

Alan O'Keeffe

Published 14/10/2016 | 02:30

Speaking at the Zeminar conference yesterday, John McAreavey. Photo: Douglas O'Connor
Speaking at the Zeminar conference yesterday, John McAreavey. Photo: Douglas O'Connor

Volunteering is hugely valuable for young people in meeting challenges together and making new friends, said John McAreavey at the Zeminar youth event in Dublin.

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The former Down GAA star told young people at the RDS yesterday that people who volunteered with The Michaela Foundation, which he jointly founded in memory of his murdered wife Michaela, had found their own lives and careers had been enhanced by their participation with the charity.

Jenny Dixon, plays Kerri-Ann in Fair City. Photo: Douglas O'Connor
Jenny Dixon, plays Kerri-Ann in Fair City. Photo: Douglas O'Connor

Michaela was murdered when the couple were on honeymoon in Mauritius in 2011. Mr McAreavey recently remarried.

Doing volunteer work for good causes was "not a drag", but could lead to "true happiness" by helping a worthy cause, he said.

'Fair City' actress Jenny Dixon advised young people to dedicate themselves to pursuing their passions in life.

Prior to becoming an actress, she was a secondary teacher. In college, she took first place and first-class honours in her science degree finals.

Dr. Rhona Mahony Master of National Maternity Hospital Holles St. Photo: Douglas O'Connor
Dr. Rhona Mahony Master of National Maternity Hospital Holles St. Photo: Douglas O'Connor

Dr Rhona Mahony, Master of the National Maternity Hospital, told young people to "go for it" when seeking their goals and not to be afraid of failure.

All achievements were gained through adversity and young people needed to have courage, she said.

The Zeminar event, attended by 15,000 teenagers over three days, aimed to connect young people with the many resources available to them in terms of advice, sports, hobbies, career guidance and well-being, said founders Damien Clarke and Ian Fitzpatrick.

Irish Independent

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