Current

Working Notes Issue 81 Editorial

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Issue 81 Young Adults in Ireland Today, 2017, Current

PdfIconEditorial

The Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures Report (2014-2020) sets out a realistic vision for the future of children and young people in Ireland. This vision is for ‘Ireland to be one of the best small countries in the world in which to grow up and raise a family, and where the rights of all children and young people are respected, protected and fulfilled; where their voices are heard and where they are supported to realise their maximum potential now and in the future’. Forming the basis of this vision is the realisation that young adulthood is precious and there is an onus on the State to ensure that today’s youth feel confident, and are supported and prepared for adulthood. Objectives central to this vision include listening to and involving young adults, providing quality services underpinned by effective transitions to youth employment, and cross-government and interagency collaboration and coordination.

A Very Unlevel Playing Field: A Reflection on Young Adults in Higher Education

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Issue 81 Young Adults in Ireland Today, 2017, Current

PdfIconA Very Unlevel Playing Field: A Reflection on Young Adults in Higher Education

Kevin O'Higgins SJ

Introduction
A lifetime of working with young adults has left me in no doubt that inequalities associated with the circumstances of our birth are more than likely to lead to successive waves of inequality that may accompany us throughout the remainder of our lives. This is true whether we are born into disadvantage or privilege.

Young Adults in Search of Mental Health

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Issue 81 Young Adults in Ireland Today, 2017, Current

PdfIconYoung Adults in Search of Mental Health

Dr. Tony Bates

Introduction
When ‘Deirdre’ arrived to see me with her mother, my first impression was of a young woman with a warm smile and not a problem in the world. She was twenty-three years old, already the mother of two. As she checked out my office, I wondered if she was happy to be here. I was concerned that coming to see me might have been more her mum’s idea than her own. In confirming the appointment, her mother had described her as ‘a bit lost’, ‘having lots of panic attacks’, and ‘stuck in a relationship that’s not doing her any good’. But none of this was apparent in those opening minutes of our meeting.

Republic of Opportunity or State of Insecurity?

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Issue 81 Young Adults in Ireland Today, 2017, Current

PdfIconRepublic of Opportunity or State of Insecurity?

James Doorley

Introduction

On the day of his election as An Taoiseach (June 14th 2017), Leo Varadkar T.D. spoke about creating a ‘republic of opportunity’.1 Although an admirable vision for the country, the evidence suggests that Irish society has a long way to go to make such noble ambitions a reality, particularly for unemployed young people and those struggling to find decent employment. Nearly a decade on from the economic crisis of 2008, Ireland is a different country; the scars of the economic recession are felt through unemployment, debt, cuts in income supports and the withdrawal of social services. As noted by both the National Economic and Social Council (NESC)2 and OECD3 young adults were particularly hard hit by factors such as reduced employment opportunities and insufficient quality education and training opportunities. Ten years on, some analysts argue that Ireland has recovered from the ‘lost decade’ and with this, there may be a perception that the situation for young people in Ireland has improved.4 However, many young people in Ireland still feel marginalised by the economic crisis,5 and increasingly, young people are at the frontline of a radical change in the nature of the labour market, such that in many sectors, the old model of permanent contracts and fixed hours has been replaced by precarious employment.6

 

Young Adults in a Climate Changing World

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Issue 81 Young Adults in Ireland Today, 2017, Current

Young Adults in a Climate Changing World

Catherine Devitt

Introduction
It’s going to impact the rest of my life; the kinds of decisions I can make, the kind of world can live in. It’s going to augment other social problems which we already have. Our lives are not going to look like our parents’ lives, because of climate change.1

The young adults of today will mature in a world different to that of their parents’. In the decades ahead, climate change and widespread environmental degradation present the biggest threats to human health, progress and wellbeing, regional peace and security, sustainablelivelihoods, and to the overall health and diversity of our planetary ecosystems.2 This article considers the future challenges that will be faced by today’s young adults in a climate changing world, and more broadly, outlines some of the considerations, particularly for education, that need to be addressed to help prepare young adults for a climate changing world.