Photo Gallery of BYP Launch - 24 September 2014:
The community of Blessington has launched an important and ambitious project. The project, entitled - BYP (Blessington Youth Project), has as its main aim the creation of a community where young people can grow up safely and without fear. One of the main strands of this project will be the prevention of early alcohol use and illegal drug use among young people in the town of Blessington. The project co-ordinator will be Eddie Darcy - Project Coordinator. Eddie is a highly qualified and experience youth worker. BYP will be facilitated and monitored in the community by a representative working group. The BYP working group comprises representatives from the parishes, schools, local sports groups, youth groups, community groups, parents groups, businesses and Blessington and District Forum.
Eddie Darcy says “We want Blessington to be a community where young people can grow up safely and without fear. We want to protect them from unhealthy influences and pressure and we want them to feel loved, respected and part of the community”. The BYP working group is determined to create a social environment where these expressed sentiments can be a reality for our youth population. As well as utilising the skills, talents and resources within the community of Blessington, the BYP working group also aims to identify and recruit support and resources from health services, law enforcement, statutory agencies and political representatives. The community will be kept informed by an ongoing media campaign and sustained community support at an individual and organisational level. In order to safeguard a healthy lifestyle for our youth and to prevent unwelcome influences in our town, we require strong community mobilisation. This is a multilevel approach from the groups listed above. All have an important role to play, and complete support is required to achieve the desired outcome. Evidence from research suggests that community mobilisation can be an effective strategy to address harmful alcohol use by young people. Evidence also shows that early alcohol use is a strong determinant in teenage risk-taking behaviour. By delaying the use of alcohol, we can also delay or eliminate other risk-taking behaviours including other substance abuse. BYP will be actively rolled out across the community platform over 24 months. The success of the project will create healthy social and lifestyle habits among the youth population of Blessington. The setting of new standards will continue to have positive impact beyond the project timeframe.
The engagement and commitment of parents to BYP will be crucial to its effective outcome. Parents will be supported in this regard with provision of information sessions and seminars on the relevant topics. The BYP working group are confident that the community of Blessington will support this effort across the board. It is everybody’s responsibility to safeguard our young people from unwelcome influences that can distract them, damage them and limit their potential. The whole of community life is thereby enhanced.
If any person is interested in assisting with BYP, or wishes to find out more, please contact 045 865327, or email firstname.lastname@example.org see www.blessington.info or Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bypblessington
The Steering Committee are: Eddie D’Arcy, Eamonn O’Neill, Eoin Phibbs, Gary O’Connor, Ger Cleary, Gina Sheward, Gerry Devlin, Kevin Houlihan, Kieran Burke, Mary O’Brien, Michael Doyle, Michael Sargent, Sally Joyce, Stephen McManus, Vincent Balfe, Mary Young, Betty Murphy, Fr. Tim Murphy