Children are the heart of our Society, now and in the future. In the past 8 years or so, Ireland has been at the centre of an economic storm that has resulted in drastic measures of austerity. This has forced adults to cut their coat to suit their cloth, and for the most part, Irish people have been exemplary in doing so. Admirable characteristics of patience and trust in governmental decision making have been shown by our society of adults. But, what about the children? Are we really thinking about the children and their future as adults?
Over the past number of years our economic reality has altered and our society of people has changed along with it. A child`s life is brief. It is briefer than the eight years since that fateful night when the Irish government at the time realized that the Celtic Tiger era was over. Since then, babies have been born, toddlers have learned to walk and teenagers are emigrating. What society is that if we cannot address the need to look after all children and give them the fairest start in life?
Proof of the need to look after our children has once again been published in the national media, yet of course it fails to make front page news and instead is tucked away in a small editorial section of the newspaper. Yet still the fact remains, Ireland has 5,000 cases involving children that are in need of extra social care workers. Another fact on the same paper is that house prices are on the rise again -and this makes front page news! Perhaps investment into Irelands real “fixed assets” that being our children, will mean that the economy will be more sustainable now and into the future. This would provide a different approach to the insistence on relying on bricks and mortar- which inevitably got us into austerity in the first place!