Municipal District:  19 February 2021 

Motion: That the council, in partnership with schools in the Celbridge-Leixlip Municipal District, co-develop a pilot engagement framework which would aim to establish open channels of communication for young people to enhance their learning about council; increase their awareness of all opportunities through the council to actively participate in the development of their town and county; and to enable young people give their feedback on the form of engagement methods. 

Report: This framework is already in place through the Council funded Comhairle Na nÓg. Comhairle na nÓg are child and youth councils in the 31 local authorities of the country, which give children and young people the opportunity to be involved in the development of local services and policies. 

In light of the fact that Comhairle na nÓg is for young people under the age of 18 and who therefore have no other voting mechanism to have their voice heard, Comhairle na nÓg is designed to enable young people to have a voice on the services, policies and issues that affect them in their local area. 

Comhairle had 58 members county wide in 2020. During the year they worked with the Halo Project, Youthreach, KYS and attended several training courses. 

They also had the opportunity to work on: 

  • Consultation process for the development of new green space strategy for Kildare. 
  • Engaging in the consultation process for the Integration Strategy. 
  • Having discussions on the participation of young people from Comhairle on the Ενϖιρονμεντ ΣΠΧ. 
  • The Comhairle Coordinator represents Comhairle at the JPC forum. 

It is considered that Comhairle gives an excellent opportunity to engage with young people and to listen to their point of view. 

We will forward the motion enquiry to Kildare Youth Services who deliver the Comhairle Na Nog programme on behalf of Kildare Co Council. 

Issued by: Mr L Dunne, Senior Executive Officer, Economic Community and Cultural Development Department. 

Discussion and outcome: The members welcomed this motion and suggested inviting Comhairle na nÓg to present to the meeting and noted it is important to devise some pilot engagement framework for primary and secondary schools.

Mr L Dunne agreed the council would forward the motion to Kildare Youth Services and revert to members with the outcome.

Resolved on the proposal of Councillor Liston, seconded by Councillor Cussen and agreed by the members that the report be noted. Mr L Dunne would write to Kildare Youth Services on this motion and revert to the members with the outcome.