Blog, N4 Ireland

Narrative 4 Ireland launches new publication to amplify the voices of young women

Girls Stories Project 2018-2021 – supported by Lorna Byrne Children’s Foundation.

The Girls Stories Integration Project was founded by Sheila Richardson (Art Therapist/Visual Arts Lecturer/Irish Artist) and Dr. James Lawlor (Director of Narrative 4, Ireland).

The project ran an afterschool support group for young adolescent migrant girls new to Limerick City. It developed from a collaboration initiative with Doras Luimní that sought to respond to the social and emotional needs of young Syrian refugees who came to Ireland under the government’s resettlement programme of 2015.

Girls Stories, a youth project dedicated to empowering migrant teenagers in Limerick launched a new publication this week. The publication, titled “Girls Stories Annual” is a collection of personal essays, poetry, and artwork which documents the experiences of a group of young migrants living in Limerick city. 

The publication aims to provide a platform for young women to share their stories and experiences, and to amplify their voices. 

“We are thrilled to launch the Girls Stories Annual and to give young women a platform to share their stories,” said Sheila Richardson (visual artist and creative arts therapist), Project Coordinator of Girls Stories. “We believe that it’s important to provide a space for young migrant women in our community to connect over their shared experiences of struggles and triumphs.”

“Every Wednesday the group of teenagers would meet at Narrative 4, 58 O’ Connell Street, and work on new art and language skills. We aimed to create a safe space for the participants to grow their confidence. The participants came from Syria, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Malaysia, Croatia and Latvia.” 

“We are so proud of the young women who contributed to this publication,” said Dr James Lawlor, Director of Narrative 4 Ireland. “Their writing and artwork are powerful, insightful, and inspiring. Thank you to the Lorna Byrne Children’s Foundation who funded this project even during lockdown, when we worked remotely and mailed art supplies to the participants.” 

The annual is available for purchase from Narrative 4, 58 O’Connell Street for €5.