GMIT Mayo hosts public event focusing on rights of those brought up in care (21 Feb)

Public event takes place on World Care Day (21 Feb, 10am - 1pm)


Press Office

Date Article Written: 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

GMIT Mayo is hosting a public event to mark World Care Day 2020 on Friday, 21 February (10am – 1pm), which celebrates the experiences of children and young people brought up in care and their rights. This event is co-ordinated by lecturers and students on the GMIT Mayo Applied Social Care degree programmes in association with Foróige, Tusla, the Mayo Artsquad and HSE, and the children’s rights charity Empowering People in Care (EPIC).

Organiser and lecturer, Dr John Mulloy, says the event will be of particular interest to care providers, social workers, foster families and all those with experience of the Irish care system. “It promises to be a lively event with interactive workshops, lots of speakers, opportunities to exchange ideas and lots more with plenty of fun along the way.”

Speakers at the event include Brenda Kneafsey from EPIC, Donal Hoban, HSE, a care leaver from Foróige, Seamus Morrissey from GMIT’s Access and Disability Office, and a representative from the Tusla Advisory Group.

The schedule includes seminars, discussions, workshops and a networking event for young people in care, carers and those involved in social work. There will also be an art workshop led by Mayo Artsquad, a virtual reality workshop run by members of Foróige, and an interactive session on engaging with third level education with a careleaver.

Dr Davy Walsh, lecturer on the Applied Social Care programme, says: “This event is a platform to showcase GMIT’s involvement in the field of social care, and how third level colleges support those receiving and providing care. GMIT is part of the Higher Education Access Route (HEAR), a scheme that offers places on reduced points and extra college support to school leavers from disadvantaged backgrounds. If we are serious about reimagining the framework around care provision, our schools and colleges need to be playing a bigger role.”

Brenda Kneafsey, Advocacy Officer for the Western Region, EPIC, said “The vision of Care Day 2020 is to create a world where the childhoods of these children and young people allow them to thrive and achieve their dreams so that they go on to have a future that is fulfilled, and they are proud of. As part of that vision, the focus of this day will be on ‘reimagining care’ and moving the care community out of an institutional frame.”

On a related note, Dr Walsh says: “Reimagining care and allowing young people to really thrive in today’s world means moving beyond the normal constructs of care, for example, on 20 February, the day before Care Day, the Union of Students in Ireland (USI) will be launching a national climate action campaign in the Mayo campus.  The campaign focuses on highlighting the importance of sustainability in our societies when tackling climate change, while simultaneously raising awareness of social issues. The initiative operates on the principle that if just 10,000 students were to collectively take action at once regarding these issues, then this would result in a positive change. All the care and the support in the world will be in vain if young people have to carry the burden for this generation’s failure to act.”

GMIT is committed to enabling access and opportunity for a diverse student community and is delighted to host, support and input into this event with our community partners. For further information on GMIT’s commitment to equality, diversity & inclusion, see

For further information about GMIT Mayo’s Social Care programmes, see:

The Care Day event in GMIT Mayo on 21 February will run from 10 am to 1 pm. Registration will take place in St Mary’s Hall on campus. Light refreshments will be provided. Parking is free and everybody is welcome


Galway-Mayo IT, IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT are working towards becoming a Technological University for the west and northwest of Ireland.

Issued by Regina Daly, GMIT Communications & Press Officer, Dublin Road, Galway.
Tel 091 742826/0879618455 (m)