Their future in your hands.

The pandemic has been hard for everyone. But it’s been devastating for those children and young people living in disadvantaged conditions.

Lockdown has meant education prospects have been severely affected. Mental health and wellbeing have taken a battering. Pathways to meaningful employment have been blocked off.

As we recover and rebuild the country, no child’s future should be left hanging in the balance. If our children aren’t rebuilt, the country won’t be either.

A generation in crisis.

Over the last 12 months we have spoken extensively to over 300 youth workers, youth organisations, and project leaders, as well as children and young people who have experienced the consequences of the pandemic at first hand.

The subsequent report gives an unflinching account of the lives of young people living in rural and urban poverty and the immediate steps that must be taken to salvage their future.

Years of transformative work by youth projects with vulnerable children has been wiped out. While smart subsidies were put in place to keep employers connected to employees, no such support was there to keep vulnerable young people connected to their lifelines.

Youth Worker

8,000
new babies born into poverty since the pandemic.

If we don’t take action NOW, the youth workers we spoke to predict:

A huge mental health fallout:
86%
say long-term mental health challenges are a key issue for young people.
Social skills and resilience needed to succeed impacted:
76%

say there will be a significant decrease in employment opportunities for young people.

Eduaction prospects shattered:
55%

says a lack of engagement witth school is a major long-term concern.

Imagine through an accident of birth and geography that you were born into that carnage and chaos of gangland violence on your doorstep? You are still expected to get proper sleep; get up the next morning; have your homework ready; and try to get on with your day and perform like your peers? No child, no matter how resilient, no matter how stable his or her family is, can survive that without harm or hurt.

That’s why we exist. And that’s why we’re needed now more ever. The pandemic has doubled down on already vulnerable children. Because of the restrictions, we haven’t been able to be there for them in the way they need it. It breaks my heart.

It’s going to take a massive effort – and extra resources – to save this generation.

Declan Keenan

Leader of the Just Ask project.

Get involved

In 2020, we raised and distributed an additional €500k which benefitted 14,123 children and young people. But we could only meet 6.6% of the staggering €7.5 million requested.

Futures are on the line. We need to do more. YOU can make a massive difference.

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