A young YouTuber from Blanchardstown has her sights set on Brussels after a landmark win in a national debating and public speaking competition.
Beverley Joseph, who works with e-Bay, is now the Irish Soapbox champion after first impressing judges in the 19-and-over category at her local library.
Beverley, who is a radio host and YouTuber in her spare time, won over the judging panel with her impassioned speech on the theme, Climate Change is Not My Problem.
She revealed: “My mum saw the flyer at the library, brought it home and nudged me, saying: ‘I think you’ll be good at this’.
“I’ve cared deeply about the environment since my primary school days, and I was reminded that I won a poster competition for recycling when I was eight years of age.”
When Beverley was 18 on a scholarship programme to Brazil, she interned for the multi-national corporation KPMG under its corporate social responsibility department.
She explained: “I had the privilege of hearing passionate activists talk about the impact of climate change and have taken it seriously since then.”
Beverley, who will publish her first children’s book, Ernest and the Prince of Peace, next year, represented Blanchardstown alongside the under-18 regional champion, Emily O’Shea, from Portmarnock Community School.
She was ecstatic to win the top prize of €1,000 and a trip to Brussels, where she will receive a tour of the European Parliament and other EU institutions.
“I feel great,” she smiled. “It’s really a privilege. It was such a nice event as well and there was a really great atmosphere.”
Siobhan Walshe, manager of the Blanchardstown Europe Direct Information Centre, said: “Beverley was a worthy winner at the regional final in Blanchardstown, and her passion for the topic shone through her speech.
“We are delighted for Beverley, and we would like to thank both Beverley and Emily for representing our Europe Direct Centre at such a high standard on the national stage.”