MEP Calls for the Introduction of a Culture and Media Card to be gifted to young people on their 18th birthday as Part of Budget 2024

by Rose Barrett
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Irish MEP Colm Markey, is urging the Irish Government to introduce an initiative that would see a Culture and Media card worth €200, presented to every young person on their 18th birthday, unlocking a world of cultural experiences and media consumption.

“After having just attended the fabulous Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Mullingar recently and seeing the exceptional talent and rich cultural heritage on offer there, I think we as a Country can do more to support our indigenous arts and culture sector from a young age. I firmly believe that investing in the cultural growth of Ireland’s young citizens is an investment in the nation’s future prosperity and identity. By providing this special gift to young adults as they come of age, Ireland can cultivate a generation that deeply values its cultural heritage and embraces diverse artistic expressions.”

Markey sees the Culture and Media Card, which is supported by the National Youth Council of Ireland, as a symbolic recognition of teenagers transition into adulthood. It empowers them to shape their cultural journey, exploring the arts, music, literature, theatre, and more, as they discover and celebrate their unique interests.

Markey continued:

“The Culture and Media card could be stored and accessed on an app and used at designated selling points including bookshops, theatres, museums, galleries, and small music venues. With access to cultural events and media offerings, young adults can unlock their creative potential and contribute to the vibrant cultural tapestry of Ireland. The Culture and Media Card serves as a catalyst for self-expression and innovation.

The initiative would also have the added effect of injecting vital support into Ireland’s cultural industries. By nurturing the demand for cultural experiences, it creates opportunities for artists, performers, cultural institutions, and media producers, strengthening the country’s creative economy.

As a nation with a rich cultural heritage, Ireland has a unique opportunity to inspire and empower its young citizens on their journey into adulthood through the Culture and Media Card. By introducing this visionary initiative as part of Budget 2024, Ireland sends a resounding message of support for its youth and commitment to a thriving cultural landscape.”

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