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Michelle, Sinead, Ellen.

SAUTI-Youth, Youth Work Ireland Galway.
Galway City.
Story of change Michelle, Sinead, Ellen. story
“We want to empower young people to realise they have a voice, that their voice should be heard and that they have every right to be informing policy!”


Meet Michelle, Ellen and Sinead. They are three active, engaged members of SAUTI-Youth, Youth Work Ireland Galway, who are "tired of climate policy not climate action". The EU funded programme, running concurrently in Galway and Tanzania, facilitates a space where young people can explore issues impacting their community and learn a set of skills that enable them to lobby policy makers and advocate for systemic change. Michelle, Ellen and Sinead volunteer with the group because they are frustrated with the lack of action and not being listened to by decision makers.

"Young people aren’t being taken seriously, we want to learn the skills so we can be taken seriously".

Michelle, Ellen and Sinead are representatives of a larger group whose priority is to work "collaboratively not combatively " and to ‘act local and think global’. They do this by working with their local councils to improve the city's pollution and transport manifestos.

They are learning how to scrutinise local policy documents, survey local areas to see if commitments have been fulfilled and attend regular meetings with local Council elected and non-elected members to discuss the cities Climate Action Plan and work on solutions for a sustainable city.

They hope to leave a legacy in the form of a permanent seat for young people at the Strategic Policies Committees . This would bring the voice and opinions of young people to the local council to support the creation of an action plan for a liveable city and Just Transition for Galway.
This is a story about a group of people under 25 who are tired of tokenistic youth participatory gestures, who are committed to understanding the root causes of the problems we face and ready with realistic solutions. They want a government that listens, a youth movement that feels heard, and a Galway that shines sustainable.


We want to create a permanent governance structure so young people don’t have to fight so hard to have their voices heard and their opinions listened to on whatever issue they care about.


Michelle – Sometimes it’s not even about hope, it’s about coping. Seeing other people trying to make a difference makes me feel better. Ellen – My hope comes from seeing how far we have come in five years and attributing a lot of that energy and power to the youth movement. Sinead – Seeing all the people around the place doing what they can and lifting each other up.


Let it go, take a breath and remember you are not solely responsible for the climate crisis. You don’t have to have an instagram perfect life, you don’t have to know all the answers or have the perfect solution. All you can do is your best and that is enough.

To find out more follow the team on Instagram - @sautiyouthproject