Dermot Earley Youth Leadership Initiative awards presented

Dermot Earley jnr in Donegal for presentations

Dermot Earley Youth Leadership Initiative awards presented

The award winners with Dermot Earley along with Donegal GAA and Foroige personnel

Peter Campbell @dgldemocrat

Certificates in the Dermot Earley Youth Leadership Initiative, run by the GAA in conjunction with Foroige, were presented to Donegal participants in the Abbey Hotel, Donegal town on Tuesday evening.

Present for the presentations was Dermot Earley junior, who has recently taking up the post as CEO of the GAA Gaelic Players' Association.

One of the proudest men at the presentation was Donegal PRO, Ed Byrne, a fellow Kildare man, who had pestered and harrassed Dermot to get him to come to the county for some time.

Speaking at the ceremony, Donegal chairman Sean Dunnion, in welcoming Dermot Earley to Donegal, said: "This is the fourth year and Donegal had been very active in promoting the programme," said Dunnion. He thanked all involved and Foroige for their work with the initiative and assured them that Donegal would continue to promote the initiative.

Speaking to the graduates, Dermot Earley said he was delighted to be in Donegal to represent the Earley family at the presentation. "I want to congratulate the students. Dad was a great believer in the power and potential of youth," said Earley, who said that there were three things which came to mind about the inititiative - Leadership (leaders lead by example); sporting side (sportsmanship, fair play; play hard, play fair and give it your all); and Lifestyle (not everybody is interested in sport, but it was important to have some interest).

Dermot Earley said that the initiative was first started in three counties but had now reached 11 counties with 300 participants.

"We are delighted that the values and ideals of dad are lived and passed on through the facilitators.

"We are so happy (as a family) and delighted where the programme has gone to and our goal would be that it would reach all 32 counties," said Earley.

MC for the evening was Donegal GAA Health and Wellbeing chairman, Kevin Mills, who thanked all who helped, especially the previous chairman and current Children's Officer, Gary Duffy, as well as the Foroige facilitators.

The graduates who received certificates were: PJ McBrearty, Matthew Wilson, Aine McGroarty, Ronan McGeehin, Jack Winters, Eoin McGeehin, Cathal Canavan, Declan McCready, Mary Flora Scott, Kieran Kilfeather, Aine Keown, Mia Nathan, Brian Fagan and Andrew McGlynn.

Applications are now being accepted for the next m0dule.