PHOTOS: Kerry ETB Celebrates Young Women At ‘EmPowerMe’ Event

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Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí students Meg Ní Chróinín, Mébh Ní Mhaoldomhnaigh, Ellen de Bhailís and Laoise Ní Dhulchaointaigh at the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday. Photo by Dermot Crean

‘EmPowerMe’ a Kerry Education and Training Board event to celebrate young women in modern Ireland and the 100 years of the Women’s vote was held in The Rose Hotel on Thursday.

February 2018 marked the 100th anniversary of Irish women’s right to vote and Kerry ETB acknowledged that this was a huge milestone in the history of Ireland.

It decided that this presented a great opportunity, to facilitate their students to commemorate and celebrate Vótáil 100 so the event was organised for fifth year female students.

Anne Marie Hassett Project Leader stated; “In Kerry ETB through our school Principals Forum and our Guidance, RE and SPHE Teacher networks, we are very aware of the challenges facing young women in Irish society today. With this in mind we researched and developed a participative wellbeing programme for senior cycle which enabled students to explore issues such as; the impact of Social Media and Influencers, Body Image, Gender Inequality, Stereotyping, Relationships and Consent.”

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Teachers were trained over three workshops in September and the course is now being taught in the eight Kerry ETB schools. Feedback was very positive, and students are gaining the knowledge, skills and confidence to debate what are sometimes very challenging issues relevant to their lives. Teachers have stated that they can see the impact that this is making on students,” she said.

“This project helps to address the need to provide a safe space for our students to discuss, without judgement the very real issues that they deal with on a daily basis.” Ann O’Dwyer Kerry ETB Director of Schools.

Sofie Ní Bhriain of Gaelcholaiste Chairraí student opened the event and welcomed the panel, students and guests.

At the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday were Aisling Coughlan and Néidin O’Sullivan of Killarney Community College, Cllr Aoife Thornton, Guest speaker Louise O’Neill, Cllr Norma Moriarty, Cllr Toireasa Ferris and Anne Marie Hassett of Kerry ETB. Photo by Dermot Crean

The day began with Norma Moriarty, Cathaoirleach of South and West Kerry Municipal District, giving a presentation on the history of Irish women achieving the vote 100 years ago.

This was followed by a panel discussion about the current issues facing  young women today. The topics included relationships, Consent, Social Media, Body Image, Influencers, Stereotyping of women and the participation of women political history in Ireland.

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The panel included the local female Kerry elected representatives Aoife Thornton Mayor of Listowel, Norma Moriarty Cathaoirleach of South and West Kerry Municipal District, Cllr Toireasa Ferris and Kirsty McFettridge Kerry Rape and Sexual Violence Centre together with fifth year students from the eight Kerry ETB schools.

Following the panel discussion, Colaiste Gleann Lí student Snjzana Herbsts interviewed the award-winning author of ‘Asking for It’, Louise O’Neill who discussed current challenges and opportunities with students.

Snjzana is on the Kerry ETB Student Forum and is also a member of Comhairle na nÓg and Dáil na nÓg.

Coláiste Gleann Lí students Mary Rose White, Blanka Siekaniec and Maeve O’Sullivan at the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday. Photo by Dermot Crean

Louise was a hugely popular choice as guest of honour, she shared very openly her own personal struggle with body image, and she gave a very strong message to the young students to have the courage to challenge others when they know they need to and the kindness to support and look after each other.

Praising the event, Louise stated; “There is a great deal of pressure on young women in Ireland today to look and behave in certain ways, and that pressure can have a deeply negative impact on our sense of self and emotional wellbeing. I see this event as a chance for us to address those issues collectively, and work out effective strategies to help young women feel more confident, self-compassionate, and at peace with their true selves.” Scroll down for photos…

Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí students Méabh Daltúin, Sadhbh de Phrionndabhéil, Caragh Ní Néill and Amy Ní Mháirtín at the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday. Photo by Dermot Crean


Coláiste Gleann Lí students Zara Efegbere, Iqra Bibi and Nais Michaal at the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday. Photo by Dermot Crean

Gaelcholáiste Chiarraí students Ruth Tanúir and Danica Ní Cheilleachair at the Kerry ETB ‘EmPowerMe’ event at The Rose Hotel on Thursday. Photo by Dermot Crean

One Comment

  1. Matty O'Leary says:

    the 100 years of the Women’s vote.

    Well, all women got the vote 100 years along with the rest of us men too!
    As if you look below you will notice poor males or male with the wrong religion or ethnicity also did not have full voting rights.

    I like to say to my children never thing in terms of sex but in terms class. As rich women, worked the social ladder for their rich men. While the rich children went to boarding school or was minded by the poor nanny. The lady would socialise (often networking), take tea and cakes in the tea rooms, do archery or even attend the latest scientific lecture in the royal society in London. The rich men would also so socialise win the men’s clubs (networking) for their business.
    Meanwhile, the poor man, poor woman and poor children worked dawn till dusk in their factories and mines!
    Equality always existed. But, not in the same way for the rich and the poor!

    In 1793, when Catholics and all male property holders of over 40 shillings were allowed to vote for the Irish Parliament.
    1829, a population of c.8 million the electorate was cut from 216,000 to 37,000 men as the property qualification for voting was raised from 40 shillings to £10 income per year.
    1832, the Representation of the People (Ireland) Act slightly extended the franchise by including £10 freeholders, those who held leases for life and leaseholders of at least 60 years.
    1850 the Reform Act gave the vote to every man with total property of 12 pounds, raising the electorate to c.16% of adult men in Ireland.
    1884, Representation of the People Act lowered the property threshold again, so that about 50% of the adult male population had the vote (compared to about 60% in England, where incomes were higher).
    1898, the franchise in local government elections was extended so that all householders and occupants of a portion of a house could vote in local elections

    The great watershed for democracy based on universal suffrage in Ireland came in 1918 at the end of the First World War. Mainly because it was recognised that to ask total war of a population entailed also giving it total representation, the vote was granted to almost all adult men and for the first time ever, to women.
    An election was held in December of that year (just one month after the end of the Great War) throughout the United Kingdom, in which the vote was extended to almost all adult males over 21 and all women over 30 with some property restrictions. In Ireland, as yet undivided, this almost tripled the electorate from 700,000 to over two million.

    As you see from the above, when exactly did all men get the universal vote too!
    The gap between both poor sexes getting the vote is slight indeed.