Vivienne Phelan, Fine Gael local election candidate in the Portarlington Graiguecullen municipal district.
A first time Laois local election candidate has urged women to get involved in International Women's Day
Vivienne Phelan, a Fine Gael candidate in the Graiguecullen-Portarlington Municipal District, called on those who would like to see increased female participation in politics to actively support candidates for the upcoming local elections.
"I believe lots of people agree with the notion that we need more women in politics in Ireland. However, on this important occasion of International Women's Day, I would encourage as many people as possible to turn this noble aspiration into concrete support for candidates on the ground.
"Many candidates, myself included, would be only thrilled to hear from individuals who would like to help out with their campaigns. There is a job for everyone and no experience is required," she said.
The Stradbally woman says she has been an avid supporter of women in politics for some time. She says she attended Women for Election INSPIRE training last year where she had an opportunity to develop her campaigning skills and network with like-minded individuals.
Ms Phelan also says she previously interned at the American Association of University Women, in Washington D.C., one of America's leading voices promoting gender equity for women and girls through research, education and advocacy, and lobbied at Capitol Hill as a result.
"I'm so fortunate to have received great support over the years from friends and family, neighbours, and colleagues within the Fine Gael party. Nobody gets elected on their own - it's a real team effort.
"I'm delighted to have the opportunity to contest this election and I hope I will be an example for other young women in County Laois who might be considering a leadership role of some sort, be it in politics, their local youth club, sports team, school or parish, to push ahead with their ambition and give it their best shot," she says.
International Women's Day takes Place on Friday, March 8