Young Social Innovators (YSI) is a Transition Year programme which encourages, motivates and creates new opportunities for young people to actively participate in the world around them. Transition Year is the ideal time for students to participate in this programme. YSI takes place during three timetabled class periods every week. Participation on the programme is compulsory.
At the beginning of the school year, students involved in YSI discuss debate and agree on a social issue which they feel needs to be addressed. There is a wide variety of issues which can be tackled ranging from homelessness to mental health. Once a project has been agreed on, the students set about researching the topic and deciding on how best to address the chosen issue. The students form a number of committees and use their own particular talents in raising awareness of the chosen issue. The students can respond to the issue in myriad ways including fund-raising, film-making, presentations, awareness talks and even through social media.
The aim of the YSI project is to raise awareness of the chosen topic and to bring about change in the lives of those affected by the issue. The students complete a written report by February outlining how they tackled their selected issue. Once the report has been submitted, the students prepare to attend the YSI “Speak Out”. This is an enjoyable event where students from all over the country showcase their selected project. If successful, the project is then selected for “Showcase” which provides students with yet another forum in which they can delineate their project aims.
This year, in 2020, students are working on two projects based on Garda Vetting and Sepsis.
Outline of Structure