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What’s happening in the Fountain Youth?


I have always believed that the Fountain is like a big old Oak tree, which has several branches providing vital services to the Dublin 8 area, and beyond. Last week I headed around to the Fountain Youth Group Club which is housed in a building next to the St James’ Secondary school on Basin Lane. The building is also shared by other services provided by the Fountain Resource Group (a crèche, and playschool). Upstairs houses the Fountain Youth Project, it’s run by Paul andNicola and other qualified staff.

Paul pointed out to me that on any given day anything from 20 to an incredible 60 youths from the area turn up to use these services. So what can the youths of the area do if they are no longer in education or on a Summer break from school?

On Mondays, a forum was specially designed to work with young female’s that is led by Nicola another youth support worker. They meet in the youth project building where they can discuss health problems and have health awarness classes. They are all members of a local gym and go each week for a work out.

Also on site on a Monday there are Art Classes. This gives the young people an opportunity to look within themselves and develop or express their creative side .

On Tuesdays there is a Cookery Class. I was shown around the kitchen which was very impressive. There are two full sized cookers and more pots and pans than you could shake a stick at. Just the day before I visted, some of the local children where shown how to make and prepare Pizza’s, they also do heathly eating courses and cook hearty foods.

On Thursays, a group is taken out to Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin to fish off the old harbour. This special group has to earn their privallage to go and do so because they have shown the youth leaders that they can respect themselves and the group. Because there are only a limited number of places available, depending on the list, groups rotate week on week to give everyone who deserves it, a chance to go.

Groups are also taken away for the weekend; again this has to be earned and at times the group do get to spend their weekend at Cavan activity centre. I was there once myself and if its peace and quiet you’re looking for, you won’t find it in Cavan Activity Centre! From breakfast call at about 8am untill tea time it’s all systems go! Everyone gets a chance to try Archery, team building, walking tight ropes, canoeing, along with forest walks and lots more. It is perfect for young adventurous people who are up for some fun.

On Fridays the girls group meets again, and because its at the end of the week all the youths are given a treat which can include a movie on DVD, or get to use the computers to go on line. In between all these services the youth project is always opened and young people can go in their anytime to hang out with friends in a safe environment, play pool, cards or just have a chat.

A new service has been recently launched for youths who are 17 or older, to help them get their drivers licence. The first thing they have to do is their Theory training. The project provides a theory test disk for people to practise on as well as the theory test book.

From a personal view I can see the driving test services being very popular. I have seen this before where young teenagers start driving without a licence and when they get caught they land in serious trouble. It’s a good initiative to provide them with the support they need to start driving.

Paul and Nicola along with the other project workers in this project provide a safe and a vital services to our young people. By doing this the teenagers and youths can switch off from what is happening in the area should there be any negitave issues affecting them.

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