Access All Areas
IWA Youth Service member Kayleigh McKevitt, from Walkinstown addressed a gathering of youth work professionals from north and south of the border, along with the Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald, T.D. at the official launch of Access All Areas on Monday 18 June 2012.
Access All Areas is resource for those involved in youth work that helps make sure that hard-to-reach young people are welcome and included in youth services and activities. Kayleigh spoke about her own experience of getting involved in youth work with IWA Youth Service and how she was grateful for the opportunity to get out and meet new people and try out new things. Among other things, Kayleigh gave the example of how she has recently joined her local Comhairle na nOg group in South Dublin County council area and how it meant a lot to be included alongside her peers.
The toolkit is available in both hard copy and as a CD-ROM,or can be downloaded from both the National Youth Council or YouthNet, the creators of the resource. Both organisations represent a network of youth organisations in Ireland and Nothern Ireland and pooled their knowledge to develop Access All Areas.
Irish Wheelchair Association was involved in designing the chapter on young people with physical disabilities with IWA Youth Service member Laura Leeson heavily involved at the writing stage. Other chapters cover topics such as working with young Travellers and people from minority ethnic backgrounds and young people facing mental health concerns.
Kayleigh overcame her inital nerves to give an heartfelt speech to the assembled crowd and also chatted with Minister Fitzgerald during a photo shoot. IWA Youth Service offers a number of youth cafes and clubs for young people with physical disablities to get involved in but can also help you to find a suitable local youth club or project in your area if you would like to meet even more young people and make new friends.
For more information about Access All Areas or the work of the National Youth Council of Ireland, please contact NYCI on 01 4784122 or check out www.youth.ie.
To find out more about IWA Youth Service, give IWA a call on 01 818 6400 and ask for Dave or Stephen.