Early childhood care learners and employers from across Donegal gathered for a unique networking event on Thursday last, organised by Donegal Education and Training Board (ETB) and Donegal County Childcare Committee (DCCC).
The ‘Nice to Meet You’ event saw eighteen childcare employers and forty current and past childcare learners form Donegal ETB’s Further Education and Training (FET) Service gather to meet each other to discuss their skills and hear about work experience and employment opportunities.
Speaking ahead of the event, Donegal ETB’s Area Training Manager, Vinny McGroary said, “Donegal ETB’s Further Education and Training service is committed to providing education options that offer our learners’ very real opportunities to progress into employment or education after they complete their learning journey with us.
We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with Donegal County Childcare Committee to organise this unique event. It’s an innovative approach to connecting our highly skilled Early Years learners with local employers who want to offer meaningful work placement and potential employment opportunities in the Early Years Sector across the county.”
In welcoming everyone to the event, Donegal County Childcare Committee outgoing Chairperson Mary McGowan said, “Donegal County Childcare Committee has a long established relationship with Donegal ETB – this is very important and I think it’s wonderful we are linking up today to give learners and employers the opportunity to meet.”
DCCC works for the development, sustainability and advancement of high-quality childcare and education in County Donegal.
Attendees also heard from Early Years specialist Dr Mary O’Kane who spoke about the critical role Early Years Educators play in developing the confidence and resilience of pre-schoolers. She told the audience, “you have the power to change the future, particularly when children struggle.” Dr O’Kane is an Associate Lecturer in Psychology and Early Childhood studies with the Open University and is a regular contributor to Ireland AM in the area of early childhood education.
Donegal ETB’s FET Service offers a wide range of courses in the field of childcare which can be found on the Course Finder section of the website: https://www.donegaletb.ie/further-education-training/course-finder/ (using the keyword child).
Photo credits: Clive Wasson Photography for Donegal ETB