05/06/2019

Gary Lightbody Shares Life Lessons With Young People

Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody has met with a group of young people from across Northern Ireland's community divide to share his perspectives and experiences on life.

Young leaders and ambassadors from the Uniting Communities Programme formed a slightly different audience than the star is used to at the Girdwood Community Hub in Belfast on Tuesday 04 June.

The cross community programme is delivered by the Department for Communities (DfC) and unites young people with the aim of improving community relations and continuing towards a more united and shared society through sport and creativity. Part of their unique training is the inclusion of inspirational speakers from all walks of life on topics which are of relevance to them, and the Bangor-born star opened up about the highs and lows from his own life.
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Addressing the young people, Gary said: "It was a privilege to attend this evening to discuss a range of issues and share my life experiences with an inspirational group of young people. Whether you play music or listen to music, it is something that brings us all together and something we can all relate to. I was very impressed by the interaction of the young people who clearly have an extraordinary connect and will to unite their communities."

The programme is one of seven headline actions included in the Northern Ireland Executive's Together: Building a United Community (TBUC) Strategy. This Good Relations Programme supports and enables young people to become agents of social change and impact positively on the lives of their peers, families and communities.  

Kathryn Hill, Director of Active Communities at the DfC said: "It was fantastic to be able to welcome Gary to Girdwood tonight to share his unique experiences with the young people on the programme.

"To have such an inspirational ambassador take the time to share his perspective and provide his support really emphasised the significant impact that the actions of these young people are having on their own future and on the future of good relations in Northern Ireland."

The Uniting Communities programme is currently underway in the urban areas of Ardoyne/Ballysillan and Colin/Eastside. Recruitment for young leaders has begun in rural areas and anyone interested in becoming a young leader or supporting the programme is urged to contact the Department for Communities.



(JG/CM)

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