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Jean Anne Kennedy

Jean Anne Kennedy (Ireland)

Jean Anne is a Ph.D. candidate in Waterford IT and a Board member of IFCO since 2009. Previously the European co-ordinator of Power4Youth, the European Youth in Care Network, Jean Anne is an active advocate and consultant at European and international level promoting foster care, strategic planning and partnerships, NGO capacity building, children’s rights and youth advocacy and empowerment. Her involvement in IFCO started out as a youth delegate in 1999 and she has presented plenaries, workshops, programmes and presentations at IFCO Conferences and other forums many times since. As a person whose parents were foster carers, her personal interest in the success of foster care and positive outcomes for all stakeholders has shaped her career path. She holds an Honours Degree in Sociology and English and a Master’s degree in Social Research (Sociology). She was Co-organiser of IFCO 2014 European Conference and a Conference Liaison Officer for IFCO 2012 European, IFCO 2013 and IFCO 2017 Global Conferences as well as a Vice-President 2011-2015.

"As current Vice-President, previously Youth Committee Chair 2009-2013 and Conference Liaison Officer and co-organiser for many IFCO conferences in the last 4 years, I have exemplified a commitment to IFCO as well as the capacity to deliver on my workload as Director of IFCO. In my role, I’ve contributed to all the board meetings as well as management meetings and supported the development of the IFCO Secretariat, which has increased IFCOs capacity to deliver on its strategy and commitment to its membership.

My specific skills include ability to think strategically, involving others, develop relationships and partnerships, advocacy at national, European and international level. My focus over the last 6 years has been mainly around youth empowerment and developing IFCOs capacity and strategy to involve youth and care leavers in the organisation. This included the development of the youth programme in terms of quality and also from a biennial event to an annual event. I also did a lot of development work towards IFCO capacity including the implementation of the IFCO secretariat and the delivery of quality annual conferences and IFCO projects.

My priorities for IFCO would be to implement the transition to a new model of governance, to ensure consistent commitment to youth participation at every level of IFCO, to remain a child-rights led organisation, to build IFCOs capacity to become more financially sustainable, as well as diversifying and increasing the amount and types of projects and partnerships IFCO is involved in."