Putting your own stories and opinions out on Ireland’s national youth information site may seem daunting at first, but the collaboration within the editing process and encouraging words from those working in spunout quickly put my mind at ease.
I was in secondary school when I first came across spunout, and I was one of their readers for a long time before becoming a volunteer. I loved how the articles and campaigns tackled the issues of young people living in Ireland, and that the majority of content was from young people themselves and the experiences they had. I really got a sense that voices were being heard, as young people our concerns were seen here and the information and articles on spunout really helped me see the light during difficult times I was facing then.
I continued to follow spunout’s campaigns across social media, and it was around this time I wanted to get involved in the work they were doing. At first, I joined as a content contributor and began writing articles. It felt important for me to give something back to an organisation that helped me throughout the years, and if at least one other young person could resonate with my articles, in the way I did from the spunout articles I came across, it was worth doing. Putting your own stories and opinions out on Ireland’s national youth information site may seem daunting at first, but the collaboration within the editing process and encouraging words from those working in spunout quickly put my mind at ease.
My positive experience in contributing content led to the confidence in myself to apply for the Action Panel, in which I have been a member of the South-East panel since February of this year. I didn’t really know what to expect when I first joined the Action Panel, but having been involved for the past couple of months, I can already say it is one of the best volunteering experiences I have had. To me, being on the Action Panel is being part of a community. Everyone involved is so welcoming and encouraging, and even though all of our meetings so far have been held online, you just know you are in a safe and positive space. We all get the chance to contribute our views and opinions towards the issues that young people are facing today, and what we all have in common is, the drive to make a difference, to help each other and make fellow young people’s lives that little more hopeful.