The Transformative Journey of Localise Youth Volunteering

Education coordinator Harry Keogh at Localise Youth Volunteering discusses his 13-year experience in facilitating programs for youth volunteers. He expresses pride in inspiring young individuals, especially from challenging backgrounds, to become active volunteers and positive contributors to their communities. Highlighting the importance of focusing on abilities rather than disabilities and the power of transformational learning, he emphasizes the power of volunteering in projects Localise makes possible. His primary advice for other facilitators is to remain genuine and prioritize the educational journey of the youth.

Localise Youth Volunteering has been shaping the lives of young individuals for over 13 years. Their education coordinator shared insights into their work, revealing stories of youth who transformed their lives and communities through volunteering.

One of the standout moments for the coordinator involves a young man with attention deficit disorder. Despite facing significant personal and familial challenges, this young man found a platform through Localise’s all-abilities quiz program. Positioned as the assistant Quizmaster, he went from being the centre of negative attention to lighting up the room with laughter and positivity.

Such transformations are not unique. The coordinator often encounters individuals who might be academically or behaviourally challenged in regular settings. However, in volunteering scenarios, these same individuals often shine the brightest.

Localise’s success is attributed to its unique approach, prioritizing individual abilities over disabilities. Their curriculum is designed around the idea of no right or wrong answers. It’s centred on the students, allowing them to set their own ground rules, focus on skills, and ultimately embark on volunteer missions with confidence.

But what’s the secret sauce to creating such successful programs? “Be yourself,” advises the coordinator. They emphasize the importance of genuineness, highlighting that youth can quickly detect insincerity. The primary focus should always be the young people’s educational journey and enabling them to contribute to their communities.

Localise Youth Volunteering stands as a beacon, reminding us of the untapped potential within every young individual. Through understanding, genuine effort, and a shift in perspective, we can mould our youth into active citizens, ready to make a positive mark on the world.

Manuela Rosso-Brugnach

Youth Programme Facilitator

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