Kells Youth Club volunteers, back, Lorraine Griffin, Kerry Flynn, Erin Moran, Aimee Kindillon, Maggie Grabczynska and Mark Tully; front, Ashling Dardis, Antoinette Moore Ross, Roisin O Brien and Leah O’Rourke.

Kells Youth Cafe’s first year

Celebrating a first year is existence is Kells Foroige Youth Café, a volunteer led youth club held in Kells Family Resource Centre, open to all young people from Kells and surrounding areas, from all back grounds and ethnicities, as well as members of the LGBTQ+ community.

Chairperson Erin Moran says: "On 25th April 2022, with the help of volunteers and the staff of Kells Family Resource Centre, we opened the doors of what was then Kells Youth Café. As we grew we affiliated ourselves with Foroige as they provided a number of supports which hugely benefit the club. The club opened all summer and continued into this year. We are delighted that on our first birthday we have over 40 young people registered and have an average of 25 young people each week, with their own Youth Committee."

They meet once a week on Mondays from 6.30pm to 8pm, and promote inclusion, socialisation, equality and active participation, Erin explains.

"During the Cafe we have a range of games and activities for the young people to take part in. We play video games, pool, table tennis, arts and crafts and board games. The young people can make toasties, eat fruit and have drinks. We also have a chill out space for young people to relax and chat. Each session costs €2 per child. We have a 10 registration fee each November. The club is run entirely on subsidies and grants.

"We run specific activities when funding allows us. At the moment we are creating an outdoor art mural that will be placed in the town. We took part in the St Patrick’s Day Parade. As we are affiliated with Foroige, we join the interclub events which are organised by the Foroige clubs in the county which are brought together by the Foroige Meath District Council. We also plan our own trips on occasion - last summer we made a trip to Causey Farm."

Erin says volunteers are an integral part of the club and they welcome anyone who may have something to offer.

"Giving your time is most beneficial but if you have a skill you can share with us we would really appreciate that. Please get in touch on any of our social media @kellsyouthcafe."