A message from outgoing Gaisce Award CEO, Yvonne McKenna

Gaisce – The President’s Award wish to sincerely thank Yvonne McKenna for her tenure as CEO over the last 8 years with the organisation.

A message directly from Yvonne:

Today is my last day with Gaisce – The President’s Award.

After eight fabulous years, it’s time to move on and try something new. But what an eight years it has been. I only became properly aware of Gaisce a few months before the role of CEO opened up. Gaisce was established not only to recognise initiative, achievement and voluntary commitment by young people, but encourage it. Intrinsic to its design was inclusivity: Gaisce was to be open to all young people, regardless of circumstance, and specifically designed to make the pitch more, not less, equal. With the fervour of a convert, I jumped at the opportunity to be involved, assuming my exalted view of the programme would wane once reality set in. Reality set in, of course, but my view of the Gaisce Award programme never dimmed. It’s not only that I’ve seen too often just how transformative Gaisce can be for a young person, it’s knowing what I know now about PALs, the President’s Award Leaders whose commitment, energy, belief in and ambition for young people make it all happen. And then there’s the people in Gaisce. As anyone who has met them knows, they are simply magnificent and it’s been an absolute joy to work with them, to learn from them, and to share many hilarious laugh-out-loud moments. All of which is to say, of course, that there’s one very fabulous job opening up soon so keep an eye out …

To everyone I have had the pleasure of meeting over the last eight years in Gaisce, from across the youth sector and far beyond, big thanks and keep up the fantastic work.

– Yvonne

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