Taoiseach Officially Opens Larch Hill House
Scouting Ireland invests €1 million in training and conference centre
Preparations begin for largest youth gathering in Ireland in 2021
Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD today officially opened Scouting Ireland’s newly refurbished training and conference centre at Larch Hill at the base of the Dublin Mountains today. The Taoiseach was joined by Scouting Ireland’s members ranging from Beavers (aged 6 & 7) to adult scouts as well as Christy McCann, Chief Scout and John Lawlor, Chief Executive, Scouting Ireland.
Ireland’s largest non-formal education movement for young people, Scouting Ireland has spent over €1 million refurbishing the centre which welcomes over 20,000 scouts from Ireland and across the globe every year.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD said: “For nearly 100 years, Scouting Ireland has been supporting young people throughout the island of Ireland and every week more than 50,000 members are volunteering and participating in Scouting Ireland led activities and programmes. Their policy of integrating capacity building throughout a young person’s life is closely aligned to the Government’s national framework on children and young people - Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures. I want to congratulate Scouting Ireland on this investment which will enable the organisation to continue to provide invaluable supports for the challenges our young people face. The new centre will also be a fantastic HQ for the World Scout Moot to be held in Ireland in 2021.”
Chief Scout Christy McCann said: “Our investment in Larch Hill House is not only an investment in the future of Scouting Ireland, more importantly it is an investment in the future of our young people. From age 6 to 26, Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Venture Scouts and Rover Scouts, participate in Scouting Ireland programmes that aim to increase their capacity to meet the challenges they face as they grow and transition from childhood to adulthood. Now more than ever, that support structure is critical for our young people. By providing opportunities for social inclusion, participation and empowerment, our programmes increase a young person’s sense of self-worth and support positive mental health.”
Larch Hill House was officially opened by President de Valera over 45 years ago. With this investment the centre has been upgraded to the highest standards with the installation of improved access facilities, modern catering facilities and other health and safety features.
Situated on an 88 acre site, Larch Hill House and the Larch Hill Campsite will be the headquarters for the World Scout Moot to be held in Ireland in 2021. Over 6,000 scouts from around the world will visit Ireland for the World Scout Moot, making it one of the largest youth gatherings ever held in Ireland. Scouting Ireland has already begun preparations for the World Moot which is held every four years.
John Lawlor, Chief Executive, Scouting Ireland said: “The World Scout Moot 2021 will be a significant tourism opportunity for Ireland. It will provide a legacy for Scouting Ireland by building our organisational capacity to expand into communities where young people are most vulnerable and will benefit most from the structured programmes provided by Scouting Ireland.”
During his visit to Larch Hill Taoiseach Enda Kenny had the opportunity to meet with members of Scouting Ireland in a campsite constructed in honour of the occasion. The Taoiseach was met on arrival by a flag party and inspected a Guard of Honour comprising of 20 youth members of Scouting Ireland.
About Scouting Ireland.
Ireland’s largest non-formal education movement for young people, Scouting Ireland has over 50,000 members. This includes 12,000 adult volunteers and 38,000 young people aged 6 – 26 in Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Venture Scouts and Rover Scouts.
The aim of Scouting Ireland is to encourage the Social, Physical, Intellectual, Character, Emotional, and Spiritual development of young people so that they may achieve their full potential and as responsible citizens, to improve society. Scouting Ireland is independent, non-political and open to all without distinction of origin, race, creed, sexual orientation, spiritual belief or gender. Scouting Ireland’s members are across the island of Ireland, including Northern Ireland, where it works in partnership with the Scout Association in Northern Ireland (SANI), which is part of the United Kingdom Scout Association The Scout Association.
The first recorded scout meeting was held in Dame Street Dublin in February 1908 and next year Scouting Ireland will celebrate 110 years in Ireland with a Jamboree in Stradbally, Co. Laois.
Famous former Scouters in Ireland include George Hook, Roy Keane and U2’s The Edge.
For further information please contact:
Kieran Cody, Communications Commissioner. Communications@scouts.ie
Laurie Mannix, MKC Communications, 01 7038620 / 086 8143710