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Joanne set to jet off to Japan


Millstreet's Joanne O'Riordan takes a trip to Tokyo next week to collect the prestigious Junior Chamber International (JCI) Outstanding Young Person of the Year award.

The UCC student secured over half of the 26,000 online votes in addition to the judges' vote.

An international award previously bestowed upon both John F Kennedy and Henry Kissinger, Joanne is known for her outspoken and honest nature, and made headlines in 2011 when she publicly challenged the government on cuts to people with disabilities.

Subsequently, Joanne addressed the UN on the importance of technology in her life and is currently in the process of working with Trinity College to create a robot to help her with everyday tasks.

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Joanne takes the award for her contribution to children, world peace and human rights, her nomination speaks of her becoming an ambassador for people living with disabilities.

Whether it is through a Ted Talk, serving on the Irish Government's advisory council for young people or teaming up with technology companies, Joanne succeeded in having her voice heard to further advance the quality of life for those living with disabilities.

Previously, Joanne won the Rehab Young Person of the Year Award in 2012.