MinisterKatherine Zappone, Dan O'Gorman (LYS) with Kathlyn Coleman and Belhany Hanrahan of Comhairle na nÓg and manager James O' Golman, and CEO Fiona O' Grady - Picture: Michael Cowhey
YOUNG people and workers at Limerick Youth Service warmly welcomed an “impressed” Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, at its city training centre during a recent visit.
Deputy Katherine Zappone spent two days in Limerick, as part of a ministerial overview of the city’s youth projects, prior to the Government’s next budget.
Minister Zappone met with pupils at Corpus Christi national school, Thomond Primary School and Gaelscoil Sáirseal.
As well as being briefed on progress of the development of the Southside Education Campus, the Dublin South-West TD launched a crime prevention programme at University of Limerick, and visited members of Thomond RFC at Fitzgerald Park.
When asked about the Limerick regeneration programme’s progress, the Minister — an active community worker in Tallaght before her political career — said it is “taking too long to get off the ground.
“I think I do understand what many of the problems and the issues are, in terms of the need to speed up the process, and also the effectiveness of a regeneration plan.
“There are lots of challenges there. What really needs to happen, and I am presuming that people are trying to do this, is that there are better systems and ways of the leaders engaging in making decisions in the context of a whole a community, or the pockets of the community, in order to identify what are the programmes that work,” she explained.
She commended Thomond RFC’s efforts to improve facilities for young people, and UL’s partnership which will “benefit all young people nationally”.