Opening messages

Chairperson, Dr Jacinta Stewart

Historians, no doubt, will write about the extraordinary and challenging times endured by everyone in the face of a global pandemic the like of which was never experienced in living memory.

Jigsaw was not immune nor untouched by Covid-19. Now, some fifteen months into the pandemic, we are proud to say that Jigsaw has continued to serve our young people well during these most challenging of times.

During the past year, despite the restrictions from the ongoing pandemic, Jigsaw delivered on its commitments and met its objectives. Thanks to the generosity of our many supporters, funds were raised to continue to provide innovative services, and vital support and research to further augment and develop what we can offer to young people and their communities.

...despite the restrictions from the ongoing pandemic, Jigsaw delivered on its commitments and met its objectives.

Dr Jacinta Stewart, Chairperson

Dr Joseph Duffy, Chief Executive Officer

At the start of 2020, like most people we didn’t expect a global pandemic to be the defining story of the year. From January to the beginning of March, it was shaping up to be a busy year for Jigsaw with lots of activity on the horizon.

On March 12th, like everyone across the country, we listened to the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, make that extraordinary speech from Washington DC.

...as we go into 2021, our challenge will be how we continue to maintain and build upon all that we have learnt during the extraordinary year that was 2020.

Dr Joseph Duffy, Chief Executive Officer

As it has done for so many charities, the Covid-19 global pandemic created a significant challenge. A collective effort has seen us rethink how we operate and develop our range of supports and services for young people and those who support them - as outlined in this report.

I believe many of these changes have made Jigsaw a stronger and more responsive organisation. One that, thanks to how we have responded to the pandemic, can now and in the future offer more choice in supports to young people, parents, teachers, and communities across Ireland. And as we go into 2021, our challenge will be how we continue to maintain and build upon all that we have learnt during the extraordinary year that was 2020.

Alba Mullen, Youth Advocate

I have been involved with Jigsaw for the best part of my young adult life. I have always been proud of the continued emphasis placed on youth participation, but never more so than this year.

At the very start of the pandemic, Jacinta, Jigsaw’s Chairperson, called me. Jacinta wanted to reach out to me directly, and my fellow Youth Advocate on the board, to ask us exactly how we felt about the pandemic. How we were coping, what we were feeling and the areas that we felt required the most support.

…Jigsaw is a charity that is driven and directed by the needs of young people.

Alba Mullen, Youth Advocate

This particular moment demonstrated to me the power of youth voice within Jigsaw. It reminded me that Jigsaw is a charity that is driven and directed by the needs of young people. It is the young people of Ireland who have helped shape a service for the young people of Ireland. And that is something that I am really proud of.

Looking forward, there is still much to be done and many young people who need to be heard. I know that Jigsaw will continue to strive to prioritise the voice of Ireland’s young people from all counties, backgrounds and ethnicities.