Year’s Round of Funding For Youth Projects Announced


Frances Fitzgerald, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, has announced the release of €500,000 in funds to develop and support new youth projects around the country.

Eight new projects – Youth Cafés – will be established as a continuation of an on-going national scheme to provide facilities for young people and promote their involvement in their local communities. The premise of a Youth Café is that it is run by young people for young people, with co-operation from local authorities and supervising adults, with an emphasis on partnership and co-operation between adults and young people. The aim is to provide safe, drug and alcohol free environments with versatile resources, which may range from a pool table and games, to venue type equipment suitable for staging shows and concerts.

In her announcement of the plan before the Dáil on Wednesday February 13th, the Minister stated: “As Minister I have been delighted to officially open many of these new facilities and I hope that the funding being announced today, along with the additional funding being provided for 2013, will allow for the opening of many more youth cafés in communities across the country.”

The first round of funding this year will go to facilities in Templemore, Wicklow, Waterford,and other cities around the country. Later in the year, an additional €1.75 million will be released, 1.5 million of which will continue the establishment or improvement of youth cafés and youth related projects, while the remaining €250,000 will go toward play and recreation resources. Dublin City Council estimates indicate that at least €50,000 is needed to establish a new Youth Café and at most €100,000. Funding for development and improvement of existing facilities is in the €5000 to €10,000 range.

The Ringsend and Irishtown Community Centre has had a Youth Café initiative planned since the receipt of a donation in 2011. The RICC Youth Cafe will likely be sited on a property in Irishtown. The facilities planned were focus grouped with local youths, who it is hoped will form the basis for a committee who will manage the facility with co-operation from community personnel.

By Ruairi Conneely