Bridgeways Family Resource Centre: A great asset to Ballymahon’s youth population

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Bridgeways

At the launch of the the new youth space that has been created in Bridgeways Family Resource Centre, Ballymahon were Stephen Douglas, Grace Kearney (Project Co-ordinator), Emer Maguire, Elaine Mulvany

The community of Ballymahon came together on Thursday evening last to launch the new youth space that has been created in Bridgeways Family Resource Centre.

Bridgeways FRC is based in the Dean Egan Library on Main Street Ballymahon.

The 1930s building has undergone serious renovation work in the past 15 months since Grace Kearney became Project Coordinator.

The renovations have been completed with the aid of funding from Tusla Child & Family Agency, Department of Children and Youth Affairs, Longford County Council, and the latest improvements to the youth space have been funded through the Rural Development Programme (LEADER) 2014-2020, which was assisted by Longford Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) and implemented by Longford Community Resources Clg.

The renovations could not have been implemented without the hard work and dedication from the staff team of Emer Maguire, Noel Egan, Elaine Mulvany, Barbra Nolan & Stephen Douglas and the many students and volunteers that are involved in the service.

Bridgeways FRC hosts a range of services and interventions for the entire community, including the following - Counselling, Women’s Groups, Men’s Groups, Recreational Programmes (Horticulture, Art, Bog Oak Carving), Conversational English Classes, Parent and Toddler, Youth Groups, Seasonal Camps, Mental Health Support, Parenting Support, Family Support etc.

Bridgeways FRC Project Coordinator, Grace Kearney explained that the new youth space is a great asset to Ballymahon community as the youth population is growing rapidly and the need for a youth dedicated space is in constant demand.

Ms Kearney added, “It is envisaged that with the help of local volunteers, this youth space will be opened a minimum of 2/3 evenings per week. The new space is kitted out with all modern technology (Ipads, Imacs, Activpanel, PlayStation, TV), a host of musical instruments (Guitars, Drums, DJ equipment) & Water Sports Equipment (Kayaks, Wetsuits, Buoyancy Aids).

“Ideally funding for a full time Youth Worker is required to fully utilise the space and to work with the youth population. As the population continues to increase the level of need will also increase. A full time youth worker will be paramount in changing and empowering the lives of young people in the area.”