This work is supported by a number of schemes that are funded from Government Departments such as the Department of Education and Skills, The Department of Children and Youth Affairs and The Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs.
Special Projects to assist Disadvantaged Youth (SPY)
A scheme of grants is made available in respect of special out-of-school projects for disadvantaged young people. Priority is given to projects in the spheres of special youth work initiatives, young homeless people, young substance abusers and young travellers. Grants are allocated to organisations and groups for specific projects which seek to address the needs of young people who are disadvantaged, due to a combination of all or some of the following factors:
• High youth population
• Youth unemployment
• Dependence on social welfare/unemployment assistance
• Social isolation
• Drug/substance abuse
• Homelessness (including temporary homelessness)
• Problems of juvenile crime, vandalism and truancy
• Failure or non-existence of mainline youth services
• Inadequate take-up of ordinary educational opportunities.
The grant-aided youth work initiatives aim to facilitate the personal and social development of participants to realise their potential and in particular to equip them with the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for their appropriate integration in society. In addition, they present opportunities for young people to undertake actions corresponding to their own aspirations and to assume responsibilities within their local communities.
This Scheme is operated by the Vocational Education Committees on behalf of the Youth Affairs Unit of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
Due to budgetary constraints and in an effort to consolidate and preserve existing provision where possible, new applications for admittance to this funding scheme will not be accepted. The available resources will be directed at existing funded projects.