Local youth spread EYC message

Oisin-Tomas O'Raghallaigh, Hughie Doherty and Teigan O'Donnell are helping spread the word about EYC19.
Oisin-Tomas O'Raghallaigh, Hughie Doherty and Teigan O'Donnell are helping spread the word about EYC19.

A group of Derry teenagers have been helping to spread the world about Derry’ and Strabane’s bid to become European Youth Capital in 2019.

Some of the young people involved in Derry City & Strabane District Council’s bid arrived at the Journal office recently to help promote awareness of the benefits such an accolade would bring for the city and district.

Oisin-Tomas O’Raghallaigh (16), Tiegan O’Donnell (15) and Hughie Doherty (16) said the bid process was helping to give young people a voice on the issues that matter to them.

Derry & Strabane was shortlisted for the coveted title back in April alongside four other cities and towns across Europe out of an initial 13 applicants.

A second bid has since been submitted, while the third and final application deadline is October 2016. The decision will be announced in November.

Oisin-Tomas said: “We are really hoping to get it, and we have been working hard to gather support. We have been out at events like Dudefest and popping up at other events and there is a social media campaign as well.

“This is helping to put the spotlight ion issues affecting young people and it means we will be able to host more events and target young people and give us a bit more of a voice.”

The young people involved in the campaign meet every two weeks to discuss how they want to proceed. Among the issues discussed are employment, education, mental health, LGBTQ issues, as well as entertainment and what people would like to see in terms of events should Derry prove successful in its bid. The participants also go out into the community and into schools to raise awareness of the issues and to maximise input from young people.

The other areas shortlisted for EYC19 are Manchester, Novi Sad in Serbia, Perugia in Italy and Amiens in France.

The European Youth Capital is a title granted by the European Youth Forum to a European City or town for a period of one year.

During 2019 the successful region will be given the chance to showcase its youth-related cultural, social, political and economic life and development. The Council has been hosting Engagement Workshops to gauge the thoughts of young people in designing the proposed programme for 2019.

To follow the campaign check out Twitter: @EYC19 and Facebook Page EYC19 Derry & Strabane, or on Snapchat .