On October 29th 2020 YAP Ireland hosted our first ever online virtual event through zoom. In previous years YAP hosted National Events in Croke Park, bringing together our 300+ Young people, families, staff and stakeholders to celebrate our clients and discuss topics that were important to them. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 we were unable to come together as a group but true YAP fashion we adapted to our new normal and brought our event online for the same reasons; celebration, discussion and voice.

The topic of this years event was #MindfulMedia , how do we succeed in this digital age? Over the last number of months the practice of YAP Ireland and the lives of the young people we work with have predominately moved online. Our group participation and parents mornings have temporarily moved to zoom sessions and our young people are being taught through online learning portals. YAP Ireland continued to provide service to 97% of our clients through the Covid-19 pandemic both in person and through online interaction. It was difficult to rethink our usual practice but we rose to the challenge.

Our event on October 29th showcased how well our young people, families and staff have succeeded in the digital world throughout this challenging time. Highlights included original raps, redecoration videos, social media safety videos and presentations of how we worked in the last number on months. On the day we were also joined live by Minister for State in the department of Disability and Inclusion, Anne Rabbitte TD, Independent Mental Health Advocate Sylvia Campbell, Youth Advocates Edel and Paul and Young Person Dalia. We were also delighted to receive video messages from the Ombudsman for Children, Niall Muldoon, Secretary General Fergal Lynch, Tick Tok Go House Stars, Marc O’Neill from Big Brother and Olympic Boxer Eric Donovan.