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  • Northside West

Mansion House launch for Philly’s HalfTimeTalk movement

Monday, 26th February, 2018 1:00pm
Mansion House launch for Philly’s HalfTimeTalk movement

Philly McMahon with proud parents Philip Valerie at the launch of HalfTimeTalk. PHOTO: GARETH CHANEY

Mansion House launch for Philly’s HalfTimeTalk movement

Philly McMahon with proud parents Philip Valerie at the launch of HalfTimeTalk. PHOTO: GARETH CHANEY

DUBLIN and Ballymun All-Ireland winner Philly McMahon officially launched his charitable movement HalfTimeTalk last week.

The GAA superstar was in the Oak Room at Dublin’s Mansion House with proud parents, Philip and Valerie, for the event hosted by Lord Mayor, Mícheál MacDonncha.

HalfTimeTalk is a 16-week programme for 14 participants which aims to engage, educate and empower young people aged 18-29 who live in communities disproportionally exposed to high-levels of deprivation, low educational attainment, high unemployment and drug use.

Philly was inspired to set it up following the tragic death of his brother John, who was battling with drug addiction.

Philly’s community in Ballymun has been exposed to many 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.

“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,” he said.

“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.”

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 has endorsed and is supporting the programme.

“It’s a wonderful example of a social enterprise that provides a pathway to success through training and experiential learning,” he said.

“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 a mentor and a suitable pathway will be identified for them, whether it is education, an apprenticeship, work placement or general life skills.

The mentors for HalfTimeTalk are champions within their own communities, who will support 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.

HalfTimeTalk Chair. Maureen King, said she was privileged to be working alongside Philly and the voluntary Board of HalfTimeTalk.

“We are all motivated to transform people's lives,” she added.

“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.”

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here