Four members of the Clohamon senior Foróige group attended the ‘Leadership for Life Youth Conference’
A group of teenagers from County Wexford were among 250 young people from all over the world who gathered in Kildare for Foróige’s, ‘Leadership for Life Youth Conference’, on Friday.
The conference, which was launched on Tuesday on the grounds of NUI Maynooth, brings together young people from the USA, Ukraine, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, South Africa and Ireland to learn how to become leaders in their own lives.
During the week-long conference the teens learn crucial life skills such as empathy, decision making, communication skills, critical thinking and team-work.
The Wexford group, from the Clohamon senior foróige organisation, was composed of Leanne Mahon, Mairead Mahon, Holly Hewson, and Ailbhe Fortune.
Commenting on the conference, Seán Campbell, CEO of Foróige, said: “It’s so important for this event to be back again in person. The conference gives young leaders the opportunity to not only learn from the speakers and facilitators, but to learn from each other in a fun and safe environment.”
He said young people are playing a greater role than ever in highlighting issues that really matter and that youth activism and community action are central pillars of the leadership programme.
“m always in awe of what young people can achieve when given the opportunity,” he said.
As part of the week-long conference, the delegates will met inspirational guest speakers including Yemi Adenuga, the first black woman to be elected as a public representative in Ireland, Professor Mark Brennan, the UNESCO Chair for Rural Community, Leadership and Youth Development at Pennsylvania State University and Jordan Lee, professional high jump athlete on the Irish Paralympic team.
When asked about speaking at this year’s event Ms Adenuga said: “As a woman who is very passionate about building women and young people, I am always thankful for every opportunity to inspire, empower and impact the youth so their future can be brighter and their lives better than ours.”
Mr Lee highlighted how important it is for young people to learn from each other and said his own story is one “ of resilience, perseverance and determination”.
Meanwhile, Prof Mark Brennan expressed delight at being invited to be part of the conference and said it was an honour to participate.