Youths volunteer their time for litter pick-up

Bishop Birch Place residents might have been surprised on Saturday morning to see 15 young people in Wellingtons marching through their estate. All were members of Youthink, a youth social club in Kilkenny facilitated by Ossory Youth.

Bishop Birch Place residents might have been surprised on Saturday morning to see 15 young people in Wellingtons marching through their estate. All were members of Youthink, a youth social club in Kilkenny facilitated by Ossory Youth.

A number of weeks ago, the group offered their time and energy to undertake a litter-pick or clean-up for a local community group, club, residents association or charity in Kilkenny city. The Bishop Birch Place submission was selected as the winning application and the young people spent over two hours clearing 21 bags of rubbish from an overgrown green area.

Youthink was established in February and meets every Saturday in Desart Hall Youth Centre. The members want to have a positive role to play in the life of the city and environs. This was the third event that Youthink has conducted this summer as part of their “Mind your Mind” project, which focuses on tackling youth mental health issues.

An environmentally themed project was chosen because, as with mental health, any area can become run-down if not tended to.

Their first two events – ‘Isolation 24/7’, involving 40 young people in Ossory Youth’s premises at Desart Hall, and a live music gig on the Parade – raised approximately €1,650 for Headstrong, the national youth mental health charity.

The three events have now seen approximately 80 young people volunteering their time to participate. To reward their commitment and celebrate the conclusion of the ‘Mind your Mind’ youth mental health project, all 80 young people are invited to a celebration in Desart Hall Youth Centre on October 29, including Halloween fancy dress, food, games, slideshow of Mind your Mind project events, presentation of fundraising cheque to Headstrong, live bands, disco and more.

“The Halloween-themed event, entitled ‘Raise your Spirits’ will be a fitting end to a hugely successful series of positive youth mental health focussed events organised by Youthink,” said Rebecca Carbery, Youthink youth leader with Ossory Youth.

Group member Sinead Doran said it would be a fitting thank-you to all the volunteers who attended the events. “There was a lot of hard work put in by the group over the last six months and we have achieved a huge amount. It will be great to have one final celebration to reflect on our achievments,” she said.

To join Youthink or find out about future projects or events, contact Patrick Bookle at Ossory Youth at 056 7761200 or pbookle@ossoryyouth.com or see Youthink profile on Facebook.