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'We equip young people with information to deal with those daily challenges they face'

Every year participants in the Flora Women's Mini Marathon raise funds for worthy causes. This week we profile a teen charity that could do with your help.

"WE'RE a not-for-profit organisation created by young people, for young people. SpunOut.ie is Ireland's youth website," says John Buckley, youth engagement officer with SpunOut.ie.

"Our services aim to equip young people with the information they need to deal with the challenges they face on a daily basis. We promote general well-being and healthy living, in order to prevent and positively intervene in harmful behaviour where it occurs amongst people aged 16-25.

"SpunOut was set up 10 years ago, in a bedroom in Donegal, by a group of committed young people. They were spending more of their time online, but weren't able to find accurate information they needed to help deal with things going on in their lives.

"SpunOut.ie is an online platform, but also works directly with thousands of young people across Ireland every year on health and life campaigns, such as positive mental health, sexual health and employment skills.

"Our main aims are simple: to enable our peers to live happy, healthy lives where we can avail of opportunities and build a bright future for ourselves. We do this by giving easy access to relevant, reliable, and non-judgmental advice to assist other young people in making informed decisions.

"Our success is in the numbers of young people who come to our site every year. Last year, just over 600,000 visited our website to get information they needed about job-seeking, mental health and sexual health. Many of our visitors got in touch to tell us how this information was vital to them during difficult times in their lives.

"In 2012, it cost 59c per visitor to provide the service we do. Any donations SpunOut.ie receives go towards ensuring our vital service reaches more and more young people across Ireland each year.

"A donation of €10, for instance, can support 17 young people directly with the help they need when they're facing challenges in their lives. Our donors can see where every €1 goes on our website at SpunOut.ie/transparency.

"This is SpunOut.ie's first year at the Flora Women's Mini Marathon. Hopefully, it will help helps us to raise much-needed funds and also reach women across Ireland with regard to what SpunOut.ie does and how they may be able to use our service."


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