THE No Name Club is calling on previous members and volunteers in Gort and South Galway to share their No Name Club experiences.
During the past 34 years, the No Name Club has touched the lives of thousands of young people throughout Ireland and now it wants to hear from them. This year, Gort No Name Club celebrated its 21st anniversary and many hosts, hostesses and volunteers have passed through the ranks over the years.
“The club here has about 70 members and has been going for more than 20 years. I would be able to get in touch with recent members and volunteers but there are lots more from previous years I won’t be able to reach.
“The club is on its summer break at the moment so it is a bit harder to get people to do this now but I would really encourage people to express what they got from their involvement with the No Name Club,” said Trish Beakey, adult leader in Gort.
At the No Name Club’s recent Volunteer Appreciation Day, founding member Eamonn Doyle estimated the number of hosts and hostesses who have experienced the No Name Club is now around 40,000 and all of these young people were mentored by a committed crew of adult volunteers.
“That, to me, is significant and most of those 40,000 young men and women emerged from the No Name Club with better attitudes to alcohol and they also had the potential to influence more people in their own lives,” said Mr Doyle.
His fellow founding member, Kilkenny hurling legend Eddie Keher, said he is “very proud of the people who have emerged through the No Name Club” down through the years.
“It’s great meeting people who have been hosts and hostesses over the years, many of them with children and grandchildren of their own now, and they’ll still tell you what a positive influence the No Name Club was on their lives,” said Mr Keher.
Ms Beakey believes the club has benefited hundreds of young people in South Galway. “The club isn’t anti-drink, it is about showing teenagers they can have a good time without the use of alcohol. Young people come to the realisation they can enjoy themselves and have a social life without drinking.
“Through the No Name Club here young people can enjoy themselves and get involved in a lot of projects and have nights out but without alcohol. They go to the No Name Ball every year, where there are more than 1,000 teenagers and there is no alcohol and they have a great time.
“We don’t emphasis the no-alcohol side of things, we respect people’s choice once they are of age,” she explained.
In April, Gort’s Cathal Broderick won Host of the Year at the No Name Club’s National Youth Awards. The 16-year-old told The Clare Champion the club introduced him to the stage, encouraging music, singing and acting.
The No Name Club is asking its past members and volunteers to log on and share their experiences during their time involved with the youth organisation.
“We’d love to hear from past and current members, as well as past and current adult volunteers, about their time with the No Name Club,” said No Name Club CEO John Donovan.
“We’d like to hear your personal account of your No Name Club experience, whether that’s the activities you enjoyed and the friends you made but particularly what you have gained and brought forward in life from your time spent with the club,” said Mr Donovan.
Submissions can be of any length and can be made via a form available on the No Name Club website at www.nonameclub.ie or emailed to No Name Club communications officer Conor Cullen at firstname.lastname@example.org.