Report calls for coherent youth plan


The youth service has only a limited capacity to provide facilities to improve the exclusion and inequality experienced by many young people in north Dublin, a new report concludes.

However, the report on youth disadvantage and youth service provision in the Northside Partnership area says that with a more coherent strategy and a relatively small investment of new resources the service could "make a major impact on the lives of young people, particularly those living in disadvantaged communities".

For this to happen a coherent youth service development strategy was necessary, both nationally and locally. The report found that nearly 50 per cent of the youth clubs in the partnership area - running from Harmonstown to Priorswood, from Darndale to Sutton - had closed. A majority of clubs reported major difficulties in recruiting and retaining voluntary adult leaders.

Participation rates varied depending on the district: uniformed groups like the scouts tended to be more influential in better-off districts like Beaumont, Raheny and Sutton. In some disadvantaged areas - like Darndale, Bonnybrook and Donnycarney - community youth projects were a factor in high participation rates. Where there was no such project or youth centre, as in Ayrfield, Baldoyle, Donaghmede and Kilbarrack, participation rates were low.

Another area of concern is the lack of participation of young people aged 15 and over.

The report points out that Donnycarney has a youth service participation rate of over 40 per cent. It says that, with some extra resources, this level should be attainable across the Northside Partnership area.