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Thinkhouse to Help CIE Create Youth Board

Pictured: Fiona Ross, chairperson of CIE’s board

Thinkhouse has been chosen by CIE to collaborate on the establishment of a new youth board at the State-owned transportation company. Called Transport Trailblazers, the new initiative will see the agency working with the National Transport Agency and the Department of Transport to “bring the voice of young people into its decision making process.”

The initiative is being spearheaded by Fiona Ross, chairperson of CIE’s board. “At CIÉ we are on a journey to transform Ireland’s public transport system. It was Kofi Annan that said ‘you are never too young to lead and never too old to learn’. I think his words are both inspiring and true. We want to be better at CIÉ and we believe that having the perspective of young people, through a Youth Board informing our decision-making, will make us better as an organisation and deliver better outcomes for Ireland.

“We want to engage a diverse group of young people – creative, forward-thinking, ambitious young people – to collaborate with us to evolve and grow Ireland’s public transport system, future-proofing CIÉ. This is a unique opportunity for young people to help shape a more sustainable future,” says Ross.

As part of the process, CIÉ is looking for fifteen enthusiastic, motivated, open-minded and forward-thinking young people, aged 18-25 years, from all backgrounds, genders, ethnicities, skill sets and locations around Ireland, who use Ireland’s public transport system and have a passion and interest in collaborating to help reimagine Ireland’s public transport system. The Youth Board will act as an advisory board. It will have a consultative role providing insights, feedback and suggestions to guide CIÉ. It will also address some key challenges and opportunities faced by CIÉ Group – from sharing thoughts on current and future operational issues to reimagining how to encourage the public at large to move from private to public transport.

Apart from having the opportunity to develop leadership and communication skills as well as cultivating sustainability knowledge,, the two year tenure will see each board member receive two years free transport on all CIE platforms. CIE is also committing to offering training, onboarding and mentorship.

According to Claire Hyland, head of insights and strategy with Thinkhouse “listening to the voices of young people is part of our DNA. Formally bringing the youth voice into decision-making isn’t just good for young people and their futures, it’s good for society as a whole. Evidence has demonstrated the impact of involving young people in decision making including improved services, policies and society as a whole. We are delighted to see an important national organisation like CIÉ invest in a Youth Advisory Board to help shape the future of Ireland’s public transport system. It’s an innovative way to lead, and one that delivers real benefits to organisations, something we’ve witnessed throughout our experience with our progressive and engaged clients across the public and private sectors.”

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