Debate to Open Conversation on Alcohol in Castleisland

Moderator Hilary Scanlan inset against the backdrop of the Ivy Leaf Art Centre in Castleisland – the venue which will host Friday’s debate between two local secondary schools. ©Photographs: John Reidy

On Friday, November 8th in the Ivy Leaf Arts Centre in Castleisland, transition year students will debate the motion: That Teen Drinking is a Serious Problem in Ireland.

St. Patrick’s Boys Secondary School and Presentation Castleisland will take part in the semi-final of a debating competition organised by Castleisland Interagency Youth Forum.

The competition is part of the forum strategy to combat alcohol related harms in the town.

Morning Event

The event will run from 10am to 12:30pm and the moderator will be Hilary Scanlan, community worker manager with the Health Service Executive (HSE).

The winners on the day will progress to a final on December 4th against a team from Castleisland Community College.

The Ivy Leaf will again be the venue for the final.

Membership of Forum

Castleisland Interagency Youth Forum includes representatives from: Kerry Diocesan Youth Service; North East and West Kerry Development; Castleisland Family Resource Centre; An Garda Siochana; Jigsaw Kerry; Kerry Travellers Health and Community Development Project and the HSE.

The forum was established in 2010 by the Castleisland/Farranfore Primary Care Team as a response to concerns raised by the local community around the increasing levels of drug and alcohol use by young people in the area.

Alcohol and Drug Harms

The agencies work in collaboration with the local community in developing action plans aimed at reducing alcohol and drug related harms.

Notable among the initiatives have been research, the production and dissemination of information resources, newsletters, information talks and the Pause For a Moment and Reflect Wallet Card.

Means of Debate

“We’re using the means of debate as it increases the debating students’ knowledge, confidence and skills,

“It also opens up a discussion on the topic of alcohol that involves and engages the entire school community,” said Dolores McElligott, chairperson of the Interagency Forum.

For further information and queries you’re invited to contact: Dolores McElligott, 087 41 94 348 Dolores.McElligott@hse.ie

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