|Files in This Item:|
|Title: ||Life as a child and young person in Ireland - report of a national consultation|
|Affiliation: ||School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin|
|Publisher: ||Government Publications, Dublin|
|Issue Date: ||Nov-2012 |
|Description: ||This report, Life as a Child and Young Person in Ireland: Report of a National Consultation, documents
the views of 66,705 children and young people. This national consultation was conducted to inform
development of the Children and Young People’s Policy Framework by the Department of Children
and Youth Affairs, which will set out the key policy objectives for the next five years.
During 2010, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) (formerly the Office of the
Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, OMCYA) developed the concept and methodology for a
children and young people’s consultation. It was agreed that children and young people in every
school and Youthreach centre in the country would be invited to complete short questionnaires
containing three open questions.
The questions for the primary school children were devised at a consultation with 7-12 year-olds
conducted by the OMCYA in November 2010. The three questions devised by children for the
primary school children were:
1. What’s the best thing about being a child in Ireland?
2. What’s the worst thing about being a child in Ireland?
3. What one thing would you change in Ireland for children to be happy?
Questions for young people were formulated by the OMCYA’s Children and Young People’s Forum
(CYPF) in 2010. The CYPF consists of 35 young people, aged 12-18, from all parts of the country. They
are nominated to the CYPF through Comhairle na nÓg and organisations representing seldom-heard
children/young people. The three questions for second-level young people were:
1. What do you think is good about being a young person living in Ireland?
2. What do you dislike about being a young person in Ireland?
3. If you were leader of the country, what one thing would you change for young people?
An Oversight Committee was established in November 2010 to work in partnership with the
DCYA on developing and implementing the consultation process. This committee was comprised
of representatives from the DCYA, the Department of Education and Skills, the two national
associations of school principals, second-level teachers, primary school teachers, national parent
associations, the student council co-ordinator (second-level), children and young people from the
DCYA Children and Young People’s Forum, and other key stakeholders. These stakeholders played a
critical role in advising on the most effective way to conduct the consultation process.
It was decided that the consultation process would be managed by experts in seeking the views of
children and young people, and conducting analysis of such findings. Accordingly, in January 2011,
a consultation team, led by Professor Imelda Coyne and Professor Catherine Comiskey from the
School of Nursing and Midwifery in Trinity College Dublin, was contracted to manage and run the
national consultation in cooperation with the DCYA.
The consultation was underpinned by Article 12 of the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of
the Child (UNCRC) (UN, 1989), which entails respecting children’s views and using child-centred
research methods. In keeping with the spirit of the UNCRC, the DCYA decided that the consultation
should provide an opportunity for the maximum number of children and young people in the country
to express their views. This was achieved by targeting all children and young people enrolled in the
Irish education system.
This is the second time that a consultation has been conducted to inform a National Children’s Strategy
or Policy Framework in Ireland. The first public consultation was carried out in 1999 to inform
Our Children – Their Lives: National Children’s Strategy 2000-2010, during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ era
in Ireland – an age of economic boom, prosperity, high employment and infinite opportunity. In contrast,
the present consultation took place in 2011 and was conducted in an age of austerity, rising
unemployment and emigration, and increased uncertainty as to what the future holds for many families.|
|Appears in Collections: ||DCYA|
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