Comhairle na nOg

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Comhairle na nOg is an initiative of the National Children’s Office under the National Children’s Strategy. It provides an opportunity for young people, under 18 years of age, to have a say in issues that affect their lives. It is composed of representatives of secondary schools and relevant youth organisations and meets around six times per annum.

Leitrim Comhairle's project for 2019 is an educational project focussing on options for young people, outside of 3rd level colleges, such as Apprenticeships.

Leitrim Comhairle's project for 2017-2018 was “Use your Brain, Not your Fists”. Spearheaded by Rosie and Joe Dolan in memory of their son Andrew, the campaign targets the person throwing the punches. Statistics show that the majority of incidents such as that involving Rosie’s son Andrew, are usually random acts, perpetrated between 8pm and 5am by people who are not known to Gardai / not repeat offenders, and drink is involved.

Comhairle members produced this short film "Use your Brain, Not your Fists" for circulation via social media, and to schools and youth groups around the country. The campaign continues to be taken up by schools and sporting organisations throughout the country.

The film was launched in the Bush Hotel, Carrick on Shannon on Friday 27th April to an audience of 200 representatives of local and national press, schools, youth groups, the Gardaí and relevant agencies. It also featured on RTE News

Andrew Dolan’s mother, Rosie , and Shane Grogan and his parents, Joe and Joan, feature in the video and share their heartbreaking experiences following their sons’ attacks. Other contributors to the film include former footballer and League of Ireland legend, Joseph Ndo as well as Garda Noel Lee and Sgt. Kelvin Courtney. The film was facilitated by Sinéad Dolan of Loch Bó Films, who worked with the Comhairle na nÓg committee members who created the content, storyboards, operated camera and audio equipment and conducted interviews with the participants.

The program is supported by Leitrim County Council, North Connaught Youth Service, North West Drug and Alcohol Task Force and Creative Ireland. Comhairle na nÓg are grateful to the Garda Press Office for permission to use their posters, literature and tagline.

This series of posters have been produced by An Garda as part of the campaign:
Use your Brain Not your Fists posters.pdf (size 1.4 MB)

Leitrim Comhairle members Aoibhinn Callaghan, Ned Sweeney and Arlene Beirne appeared previously on the Claire Byrne Live programme on RTE on 9th January, alongside Rosie Dolan. On an very poignant programme, our young people presented excellently and helped send out a powerful message on national television.

Comhairle na nÓg won the Wellbeing category in the prestigious Pride of Place Awards in November 2018 with the Use Your Brain Not Your Fists campaign - a fantastic achievement given these awards cover the 32 counties!

The hard work and dedication of comhairle members Jodie O’Boyle, Ned Sweeney and Arleen Beirne was recognised at the Sligo Leitrim Garda Youth Awards recently.Well deserved! Pictured below

Garda Youth Awards


The Comhairle is currently being run by North Connaught Youth and Community Services.
Contact: Fiona Taylor on 071 9641721 or email

Leitrim Comhairle na nÓg Facebook page
National Comhairle website

 For further information contact Suzanne Duffy on (071) 9620005 ext. 540

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