HalfTimeTalk is a 16 week programme comprised of 14 participants which aims to engage, educate and empower young people between the age of 18 and 29 who live in communities that are disproportionally exposed to high-levels of deprivation, low educational attainment, high unemployment and high-levels of drug use. The movement equips participants with the necessary skills to unlock their potential and empowers them to make better choices. It is potentially a life changing experience, which will help young people turn their lives around.
Growing up, Philly’s community of Ballymun was exposed to these challenges and he believes that community still plays a fundamental part in shaping who we become. Philly saw sport as a diversion and found that it instilled a framework of positive reinforcement in his life.
Philly McMahon stated “Everyone needs a half time talk to reflect on what has gone before and to put strategies and focus in place to do better in the second half. Losing my brother John in 2012 inspired me to go down a more positive pathway. John is my biggest role model and he is my motivation for setting up the charity. I believe that had HalfTimeTalk been in place when John was facing adversity, he might have gotten to play a better second half”.
There are currently high levels of long term unemployed young people on the live register in Ireland. Significant strides have been made in addressing the needs of unemployed young people in Ballymun, however with over 280 young people unemployed for six months or less and over 255 unemployed between 1 – 5 years, further work and improvements are required.
The HalfTimeTalk movement will initially be introduced in the Ballymun and Whitehall areas, with three programmes taking place in year one. In year two, HalfTimeTalk plans on expanding on the amount of programmes taking place across Dublin, with ambitions to roll the movement out nationwide in year three.
Professor Brian MacCraith of DCU commented, “I am delighted to support and endorse ‘HalfTimeTalk’. It’s a wonderful example of a social enterprise that provides a pathway to success through training and experiential learning. While DCU is very proud of the sporting and career achievements of our Alumnus, for Philly we are even more proud of his work to empower those encountering disadvantage.”
Each participant on the programme will be assigned their very own mentor and a suitable pathway will be identified for them, whether it be education, an apprenticeship, work placement or general life skills. The mentors for HalfTimeTalk are champions within their own communities all over Ireland, who will support the participants on their personal journey as they develop themselves through mental and physical health, improving their self-belief and confidence.
The participants will also engage with employers and will be given support and guidance in seeking their own employment opportunities.
Board Chair Maureen King added, “I have the privilege of working alongside Philly and the voluntary Board of HalfTimeTalk and we are all motivated to transform people's lives. We are aware of the barriers to employment that mental health, addiction and socio economic factors can have and we believe by showing compassion to young people and providing the support of a role model in their local community HalfTimeTalk can help young people choose more positive pathways in life”.
For more information contact
01 293 99 77