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Children speaking out on World Children’s Day – Ombudsman for Children

Following a devastating 18 months for children and young people, the Ombudsman for Children’s Office is hosting Child Talks 2021, an opportunity for children to have their say on the impact the pandemic has had on their mental health, Direct Provision, scoliosis, gender equality, climate change and a range of other issues. Child Talks 2021 takes place on Friday 19th November at 11am to mark World Children’s Day. The event will be streamed live on

In keeping with this year’s theme, Children aged 10 to 17 will share their Hopes for the Future and call on those in positions of power, to listen and to learn from what they have to say.

Dr Niall Muldoon, the Ombudsman for Children said:

“Children have been through so much since March 2020 – they have missed out, fallen behind and taken the blame. The theme of this year’s Child Talks is My Hopes for the Future and it is inspiring to hear how our young people are dealing with challenges and looking forward.

“This year’s speakers bring so much hope and positivity highlighting the strength of our young people.”

Child Talks 2021 will be presented by former speakers Katherine Amusan (17) and Oisin Putt (19) and it will be watched by students in classrooms across the country.

Meet the speakers:

Dariusz Konefal (16) from Longford will tell a story of how he was inspired by how the global response to Covid 19 and how it gave him hope for how we might tackle the Climate Crisis.

Angelica Foley (17) from Wicklow will tell a story about fast fashion and how she struggled to find a way to make a personal difference in the face of such a huge global issue.

Darragh Cahill (12) from Kilkenny will talk about what happens to a soccer loving young boy living with scoliosis after he finally undergoes the long awaited surgery that changes his life for the better.

Franny Raven (16) from Wicklow story is about her daily struggle with people that led to her leaving school early. However during lockdown, a passion for animals inspires her to reach out, make friends and reconnect with the world again.

Precious Matumba (16) from Meath loves nothing more than baking cakes. Living in Direct Provision with her Mum, she began an online baking empire conceived during lockdown that she hopes will help her write her own future.

Ella O’Donoghue Concannon (17) from Galway loves driving the family tractor.  However, the first time she drove it on her own nearly convinced her to never drive again. Ella’s story is about gender equality in farming.

Molly (11) and Bobby (10) Chapple from Galway want nothing more than to cycle their bikes on the road on their own. However like many parents, Molly and Bobby’s Mum & Dad worry about their safety. Their story is about what happens when you have a little faith in your kids and how the freedom of cycling can inspire great things.


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