Generation Change

Picture the scene: thousands of young people; hundreds of fantastic youth projects; messages of support from Hollywood stars, music moguls, world leaders and sporting heros - all for one one hotly contested competition to be the best of the best.

The star studded final of the permanent tsb Foróige Youth Citizenship Awards took place again this year in the Helix Theatre in DCU in November where 10 outstanding youth groups battled it out to become Ireland's Top Teens. The competition and awards give young people from around the country a unique platform to dare to make a difference in society and to stand up and be counted as citizens of the world.  

Danny from The Script The work that you guys are doing in your community, the thought and dedication you have for all of your projects - it takes real courage to push through adversity and you guys are a true testament to that.

The whole country joined in again this year as the awards were screened on TV3 in two prime time specials called Ireland's Top Teens. With performances by Origional Rude Boys, Royseven and Got To Dance stars Prodijig and with messages of support from famous faces such as Hollywood star Chris O'Dowd, world leader Mary Robinson, Broadcaster Hector Ó hEochagáin, author Cecelia Ahern, Westlife star Nicky Byrne, Hollyoaks actor Emmett Scanlan as well as sports stars Leinster and Ireland rugby player Sean O'Brien and Irish football icon Shay Given, the glittering awards was an event not to be missed.

In 2012, more than 12,000 young people voluntarily worked to make their communities a better place to live and became a force of good for communities all over Ireland as part of the Foróige Citizenship Programme and Awards.

And after a nail biting finale, the winners of
Ireland's Top Teens are...

Rosemount Foróige Club, Co Westmeath, were crowned the overall winners and 'Ireland's Top Teens' for their Farm Safety Project aimed at children Inspired by first-hand experience of the dangers of living on a farm and a desire to reduce instances of farm accidents and deaths, the Rosemount teenagers developed a hard hitting yet fun and engaging safety programme targeted at both farmers and children.

Gary Lucy of Hollyoaks, The Bill and BBC's EastEnders helped us to launch the Awards Show at a specially organised photocall on the morning of the awards.

Gary Lucy of Hollyoaks