Changing Futures: New Child Friendly Tusla Website
Tusla – Child and Family Agency is today launching a new child-friendly website, ChangingFutures.ie to help young people to better understand the work that Tusla does. The website will be unveiled at the Printworks in Dublin Castle at an event that will be attended by over 100 children, young people and staff from Tusla and Tusla funded organisations. Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone, will also be in attendance.
Changing Futures is a uniquely youth-driven project, created and developed entirely by young people – including the name, logo, look, design and content. Born out of the Dublin South East/Wicklow Child and Youth Participation Project, it then grew into a national project. Beginning in 2016, an Agenda Day™ was facilitated by six young adults with lived experience of Tusla and its funded services. From here, the concept of a website specifically for young people containing accessible information about Tusla services was developed.
Young people were involved at every stage of the website development. Students from IADT in Dun Laoghaire assisted in developing the website’s design and media elements. Website builders Piquant also helped to bring the site to life.
Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone who will open the event said “Not only hearing the voice of children and young people, but ensuring their views are reflected in decisions made on issues that matter to children and young people, is a priority for this government. Children and young people’s participation is now viewed as an invaluable aspect of policy and service development across national and local Government.”
Pat Smyth, Interim Chief Executive Officer, Tusla commented, “Tusla is committed to becoming a more participatory agency and Changing Futures is a compelling example of what can be achieved when children and young people are given the opportunity to get involved with Tusla decision making and to make a real difference to Tusla services. ChangingFutures.ie is the first website of its kind, and was only possible due to the immense creativity, passion and innovation embodied by this group of young people. The young people involved in this project are a testament to the young people that have engaged with Tusla services.”
Jim Gibson, Chief Operations Officer, Tusla said “At Tusla, we want children and young people at the heart of everything we do. To make the right decisions, we need to listen to and act on what children and young people are telling us. Changing Futures has been almost three years in the making, and marks a significant milestone in the Child and Youth Participation Project. The launch event will present the incredible story of the Changing Futures project to date, showcasing the hard work and dedication of the young people involved.”