Belfast Telegraph

Scheme launched to help vulnerable and marginalised young people

UBU – Your Place, Your Space brings together four existing, overlapping schemes.

UBU – Your Place, Your Space brings together four existing, overlapping support schemes (PA)
UBU – Your Place, Your Space brings together four existing, overlapping support schemes (PA)

By Cate McCurry, PA

A new scheme that aims to help marginalised, disadvantaged and vulnerable young people will provide more than 38.5 million euro for youth services across the Republic of Ireland.

The scheme’s range of services will support young people to develop their personal and social skills and help improve their life chances.

These include services covering health, education, employment and social connectedness.

The initiative is called UBU – Your Place, Your Space, and brings together four existing, overlapping schemes.

The project will also help to deliver the National Drugs Strategy goal of improving services for young people at risk of substance misuse in socially and economically disadvantaged communities.

It will target people aged between 10-24 years who are e experiencing economic, social and cultural disadvantage.

These include young people who live in communities with high concentrations of families who are dependent on social welfare or have low incomes, experience inter-generational unemployment, have high levels of addiction or come from one parent families.

It also includes young people who come from situations of family breakdown and low educational attainment, including young people who live in deprived communities.

It will also help marginalised young people, including young carers, Travellers, immigrants, those with disabilities or mental health issues, and young LGBT people.

For many young people, the relationship they have with their youth worker is the most significant relationship in their lives Katherine Zappone

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone launched the targeted youth funding scheme in Tallaght on Monday.

Ms Zappone acknowledged the vitally important role that youth services play in the lives of young people across the country.

“For many young people, the relationship they have with their youth worker is the most significant relationship in their lives. These relationships must be valued and supported,” she said.

“It is my hope that through the implementation of UBU – Your Place, Your Space we now have in place a funding programme and framework which will allow strong and stable youth services to flourish.”

UBU – Your Place, Your Space was designed in collaboration with young people, the youth sector, and Education and Training Boards over the last five years.

Sixteen consultations were carried out with 264 young people aged 10-26.

The minister added: “The launch of UBU – Your Place, Your Space contributes to the broader efforts of my colleagues across Government in acknowledging that a positive community context can enable engagement and play a part in breaking the cycle of disadvantage.”

The project will also help young people who are vulnerable or at risk of not flourishing.

These include young people in or leaving care, young people experiencing or involved in substance misuse and young people with little or no formal structure in their lives.

The project will aim to help young people with their communication skills, confidence, planning, relationship problems as well as their resilience and determination.

PA

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