SDLP Youth hold their annual Conference in Derry next weekend. The Youth Group are scarily good…and eight of them made it on to the full Party Executive in November last year.
Back in 1973/74 I tried to interest the SDLP in a Youth Section and despite one meeting I called in West Belfast (a young man called Alban Magennis was among seven people who showed up) and presenting my case to the Partys Organisation Committe at the Dunowen Restaurant in Dungannon…nothing happened.
It was the 1980s and I had left SDLP before the Youth Group actually got off the ground. So it does my old heart a lot of good to see that the Next Generation are so strong within the Party. Among those “boldly going” is Cliona McCarney who is running for SDLP Youth Vice Chair. Cliona is from South Belfast and just finishing her first year at Queens University. I am happy to endorse her campaign.
In November I walked into the Armagh City Hotel just as Cliona was about to make a speech to Conference. She was simply brilliant.
Mol an Óige agus tiocfaidh sí! Encourage Youth and It will Thrive!