Make it a summer to remember with a LOFT Summer Camp!
There’s lots on at LOFT this summer with a wide range of summer camps and activities to choose from! Summer Camps 2018 Multi-Activity 10th – 13th of July | 11am – 4pm | €60 A fun filled week for all aged 12-18. This week will provide a great opportunity to try out some new activities, meet new people and gain confidence. Activities may include surfing, a visit to Waterworld or other adventure parks, a BBQ at Ards Forest Park and more. Ready Steady Cook 17th – 20th of July | 11am-4pm | €60 Get ready for this year’s cookery camp and learn to cook some scrumptious starters, mouthwatering mains and delicious desserts. There will also be a focus on healthy eating, budgeting and if the weather is nice we may have a BBQ too. Aimed at all aged 12-18. AMP (Art & Music Project) 14 – 17th of August | 11am-4pm | €60 This week will be packed with creative activities and workshops. It is a great opportunity to gain confidence, make new friends and learn something new. Everybody aged 12-18 welcome, no previous experience necessary. Rockschool 20th – 24th of August | 11am-4pm | €75 This year’s Rockschool is going to be a brilliant week for all young people with an interest in music. There will be workshops to advance your skills or introduce you to something new. All aged 12-18 welcome no previous experience necessary. REAL U 7th – 10th of August | 12am-4pm | €20 This week is for girls aged 12-18 who want to gain confidence, find out more about relationships and learn how to stay healthy. This will happen in a fun and active way and will also include a pamper day with make-up tuition, baking fun and more. How to sign up? To sign up simply fill out one of the sign up/membership forms. Pick up a form at 16-18 Port Road, Letterkenny. Bring this form into the LOFT and to secure your place you can pay a deposit of €20. Places will be given on a first come first served basis. For more information please contact the LOFT on 074 91 29630 or via email on firstname.lastname@example.org. Other things happening this summer Drop in The drop-in space is a safe and supervised space in which young people can meet their friends, speak to youth workers or simply hang out. This space is jointly managed by the Youth Information Centre and the LOFT and is open: Monday & Tuesday 12-6pm Wednesday & Thursday 12-8pm Friday 12-10pm Saturday 2-6pm Events There will be a variety of different events happening during the dorp-in times this summer including band nights, movie nights, cookery events and gaming competitions. Please keep an eye out on our Facebook Page and the LOFT Instagram for any updates on these. Individual Support Staff in the LOFT provide individual support for all young people aged 12-24. The summer can be a long and sometimes challenging time where young people can feel isolated or anxious about their future. Please feel free to get in touch if you or someone you know could benefit from a little extra support. Individual support is targeted and flexible to ensure the young person’s needs are met. The LOFT is jointly managed by Foróige and Donegal Youth Service and funded by Tusla. The LOFT is located at 16-18 Port Road, Letterkenny. Phone: 074 91 29630 Email: email@example.com
Safer Internet Day takes place next Tuesday, 7th February 2023. Sadly more than 1 in 4 young people in Ireland have experienced cyberbullying, yet only 60% of victims tell their parents. As teenagers and children spend more time on the internet, ensuring it's a safe space is ever more important.
To encourage conversation about life online and help parents keep their children safe, I'd like to share a free resource created by Switcher.ie.
It's a comprehensive guide which includes things like:
How to reduce the risks online
How to recognise cyber bullying and grooming
How to educate children on cyber safety
How to set up parental controls on devices
I thought it may be useful to share the link to the guide - https://switcher.ie/broadband/guides/how-to-keep-your-children-safe-online/ - which you can include on your website ahead of Safer Internet Day, to help parents and children who may need some extra support.
We've also put together some handy top tips you can use on your website:
10 tips to keep your children safe online
Talk about it:Make time to chat about online risks and how to use the internet safelyas soon as they're old enough to go online. Encourage your children to speak to you about what they view online and empower them to act if they're worried about anything.
Recognise the risks: Educate yourself about the potential dangers children could face online so it’s easier to spot warning signs. Get to know what platforms your children use, and learn about dangers such as phishing, grooming and cyberbullying.
Teach the do's and don'ts: Be clear about the non-negotiables. For example, teach your child not to share personal details or photos with strangers and instruct them not to click on links to unknown websites or texts. Do encourage your child to question what they see and only accept friend requests from people they know.
Spot the signs: Pay attention to your children's behaviour whilst on and off their devices. Being alert to changes in your child can help prevent problems from escalating. Some warning signs are withdrawing from friends or family, sleeping and eating problems or losing interest in previously loved hobbies or interests.
Set boundaries:Let your children know what they can and can't do on the internet from the get-go. Agree on what devices they can use, when, and how long they can spend online. As they get older, explaining and negotiating boundaries may be more effective.
Take 'parental' control: These ready-made boundaries put parents in control of what children can see online. They can be set up through your internet provider at device level to block specific websites and filter out inappropriate content.
Be social media savvy: The popularity of social media apps like TikTok and Snapchat makes it harder to keep track of what your child is accessing online. Fortunately, each social media platform has its own privacy settings and safety tips for parents. Check them out before you let children have their own accounts.
Protect from harm:Install antivirus software on family devices to minimise the risk of cyber attacks or scams. Use two-factor authentication (2FA) for extra security on your online accounts. This can also stop children from signing into services they're not allowed to use.
Set a great example: You're the greatest 'influencer' in your children's lives when they're young. Limiting your time online, discussing dangers you've come across, and questioning what you view can help reinforce the rules you are setting for your children and, in turn, influence their online behaviour.
Seek support:The more you learn about online dangers, the better equipped you'll be to handle them. There are some great resources like webwise.ie, internetmatters.organd cybersafekids.ie to help you recognise and reduce online dangers and seek advice if you think your child is experiencing cyberbullying or is at risk online.
Infant Mental Health Awareness Week runs from June 13th-19th.
This week provides an opportunity to focus attention on the wellbeing, social and emotional development of our babies and young children. It highlights the importance of early relationships and a relationship based approach to interventions with infants and families. As our understanding of IMH and its evidence base develops, so also does our knowledge of how to apply this knowledge and an ‘IMH lens’ to interactions with infants, parents and caregivers in health and social services.
What is infant mental health?
Infant Mental health (IMH) refers to the healthy social and emotional development of Infants starting at conception up to three years of age.
The first 1000 days of life are recognised as a critical period of opportunity to support infant mental health. Decades of research have shown that it is the quality of the early caregiver relationship that is a significant determinant of the infant’s healthy social and emotional development and in turn physical health, right up to adulthood.
The National Healthy Childhood Programme has embedded IMH as the foundation of the development of its resources and in the approach of the delivery of the universal child health service. This embedding of key messages can be seen in the My Child suite of books (www.mychild.ie/books) and also onwww.MyChild.iewhere key messages around bonding and relationship building have been embedded for the parent/caregiver.
In clinical practice the topic of IMH has been included for the first time in the National Standardised Child Health Record. To build on this, the National Healthy Childhood Programme have just completed a suite of threeeLearning units which are now available onHSEland for healthcare practitioners / caregivers who are working with children and families.
Throughout the week you will see videos and key IMH messaging being promoted on the HSE MyChild social media pages ( Facebook / Instagram ). Keep an eye out in the National Newspapers for articles from our experts also. (IrishTimes article)
In additionThe National Healthy Childhood Programme have developed a series of ten practical videos with HSE expert advice which are now available on YouTube and on the relevant pages on the www.mychild.iewebsite.
These videos (2-3 minutes each) are aimed at parents/guardians of children (0 – 3 years).
These new video resources are availableherewhile lots more expert advice for every step of pregnancy, baby and toddler health can also be found atwww.mychild.ie
There are a suite of posters available focusing on the promotion of IMH messaging to order from firstname.lastname@example.org