More than 1,000 students from 35 Primary schools across Ireland had a unique chance to interact with their local MEPs during “Ask Me Anything” events as part of Europe4U 2021, an initiative run by Junior Achievement Ireland (JAI), with the support of the Communicating Europe Initiative.
- Maria Walsh & Luke Ming Flanagan from the Midlands, North West Constituency
- Ciaran Cuffe, Barry Andrews, Frances Fitzgerald & Clare Daly from the Dublin Constituency
- Deirdre Clune & Grace O’Sullivan from the South Constituency
MEP’s took a variety of questions from the highly engaged students and spoke about their role as MEPs, the role that the European Union plays in their daily lives, the advantages of being EU citizens, the rights that come with EU citizenship and Ireland’s place in Europe.
“ Thanks to Junior Achievement for arranging the Europe4U event with Ciarán Cuffe, MEP. I think that the quiet in my room today showed the level of interest there was in what Ciarán had to say! We really appreciate Ciaran spending this time with us today and for all of his work in the European Parliament.” Ann Creamer, St. Columba’s Primary School, Dublin 3
Each MEP also announced Stage 2 of the project, which was the ‘Design your EU’ poster competition.
Europe4U is designed to inform second level students of the advantages of being an EU citizen and what rights are drawn from their citizenship. Comprising a number of interactive activities, Europe4U helps students and participants to gain an understanding of the benefits to the individual and wider community that EU citizenship brings.
The children certainly kept me on my toes with their questions during Europe4U – a nice break from the routine of parliament for sure! Thanks to Junior Achievement for putting these events together and to the teachers for the work they do every day. I look forward to participating again in the near future! Ciarán Cuffe, MEP
During the event, the MEP’s reflected on their journey to becoming an MEP and how they began to have an interest in politics. They highlighted the importance of being involved in our local communities and helping to make them a better place for all of us to live in.
They also spoke of the advantages that Ireland accrues from being part of the EU such as access to funds used in COVID 19 unemployment payments and COVID 19 vaccinations when they were being distributed. They highlighted infrastructural projects, access to grants for farmers, health and safety of citizens, and reduction in carbon emissions.
Thanks to our 8 MEP’s for taking the time to increase the students’ understanding of the benefits to the individual and wider community that EU citizenship brings!