Councillor Sarah Kiely, Yvonne Lane, Learning Limerick Coordinator, and Padraig Malone, Limerick City and County Council are delighted to accept an invitation from UNESCO to participate in the fourth International Conference on Learning Cities (ICLC). The conference is ‘Inclusion – A principle for lifelong learning and sustainable cities’ is being held in Medellín, Colombia, from 1 to 3 October 2019.
Councillor Sarah Kiely, deputising for the Mayor of Limerick City and County, has been invited to speak on the theme “Digitally Excluded Citizens”. The key agencies in Limerick have a strong expertise in this area, with Limerick Digital Strategy 2017 – 2020 – Building Ireland’s First Digital City being launched by Limerick City and County Council in 2018. Brendan Ryan, Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board, previously presented on the theme of Digital Inclusion at our Learning Cities Seminar held in King John’s Castle and also at the Cork Learning Cities International Seminar; both events being during the Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival week last April. It was arising from this presentation that our Mayor received the invitation to present at the conference in Colombia.
This event, which is being co-organized by the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) and the city of Medellín, will gather approximately 650 participants, including mayors of member cities of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities (GNLC), city education executives, officials from ministries of education, and representatives of UN agencies, regional organizations, non-governmental organizations and private-sector representatives. Additionally, experts from the fields of lifelong learning and urban and sustainable development will present research findings and trends in the field.
Participants will have the opportunity to meet city representatives, including members of the UNESCO GNLC, to collaborate and to forge new partnerships that will enhance learning experiences for all people. Indeed, Limerick has been invited to take on the role of coordinating city for the cluster on “Entrepreneurship” and the Learning Limerick steering group is looking forward to sharing experiences on the implementation of local actions and to leading the work of this thematic cluster. At the last UNESCO Conference in Cork in 2017, Limerick was honoured to receive the UNESCO Learning City Award in recognition of its work in promoting lifelong learning for all.