Tuesday, 8 September 2020
Department of Children and Youth Affairs
My Department supports the provision of out of school supports to young people in their local communities. This support enables young people to achieve their full potential by strengthening their personal and social competencies.
This support is framed in my Department’s national policy framework for children and young people Better Outcomes Brighter Futures and its constituent National Youth Strategy. The goals of these strategies are embedded in the service delivered by funded youth organisations who support, and provide opportunities for, young people. These goals are also realised through the close involvement of young people in service provision by respecting their rights and hearing their voices as they transition from childhood to adulthood.
In Budget 2020, my Department was allocated nearly €62 million in funding to support the provision of youth services nationwide. This funding has been maintained throughout the recent challenging period and this has enabled the youth sector to continue to provide supports to young people, particularly to marginalised, disadvantaged and vulnerable young people.
It is of note that youth work services did not cease supporting young people during the period of restrictions, and I would like to commend the sustained effort and innovation of the youth sector during this time.
The largest share of youth funding directly supports the delivery of targeted youth services on the ground, with €38.8 million provided to funded organisations through UBU - Your Place, Your Space, a new youth funding scheme which opened on 1 July this year.
National Youth Organisations have benefited from over €11.5 million in funding under the Youth Services Grant Scheme . The universal youth work carried out by the national youth organisations, through volunteer led groups and clubs, is transformative for young people.
Over €2.1 million has been made available for the Local Youth Club Grant Scheme this year. This scheme supports youth work activities at a local level by providing small grants to youth clubs and groups.
I was also delighted to recently announce capital funding of over €2.3 million to 147 youth projects and services and 25 national youth organisations.
I want to assure the Deputy of my commitment to children, young people and their families, my commitment to the youth sector that provides such crucial support to them and my commitment to continue to invest in youth services as stated in the Programme for Government.