WHAT IS THE YOUTH EDUCATION FUND
The Youth Education Fund has been created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) in partnership with the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Department of Rural and Community Development provides match funding for all philanthropic funds raised by Social Innovation Fund Ireland, via the Dormant Accounts Fund.
Through the Youth Education Fund, we are aiming to improve access to higher and further education for students (up to age 25) affected by disability or disadvantage.
THE YOUTH EDUCATION FUND OBJECTIVE
Education largely determines the opportunities afforded to people throughout their lives. Those who leave education without qualifications are hindered in their ability to find well-paying jobs, and as a result are more at risk of poverty.
We are calling out to innovative projects or programmes in Ireland that:
- Improve the retention of youth learners up to age 25 who are affected by disadvantage or disability at level 1 to 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) or equivalent accredited programmes/courses; and
- Demonstrate movement of learners along the NFQ ladder or equivalent.
The Youth Education Fund aims to have wider impact and will contribute to Ireland’s achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Midlands Science project works to progress socio-economic development in the Midlands of Ireland (counties Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath), through the promotion of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) education. Midlands Science aims to create greater interest in STEM education among young people, enabling and preparing them for future careers in the area, thereby furthering the development of the region. Activities and events are provided for all age groups, with the aim of inspiring children to receive STEM education from an early age, granting them broader horizons and possibilities throughout their lives.
Raheen Wood ALFA
Raheen Wood Steiner Secondary School, home of ALFA (Active Learning For Adolescents), provides a full-time, progressive education for 12-16 year olds in East Clare. It is a radical alternative to the mainstream Junior Cycle, with a team of experienced educators offering a project-based learning programme. It develops key 21st century skills such as collaboration, communication, problem-solving, critical thinking, and resilience. The curriculum puts emphasis on the quality of the relationship between students and teachers, making it a successful approach for children that struggle and underperform in the mainstream education system.
Sing Out With Strings
Sing Out With Strings provides free access to high quality music education in areas of acute social and economic disadvantage in Limerick. SOWS provides weekly workshops in singing, songwriting, violin, viola, cello and double bass tuition to 300 children across Limerick city. The project was established by the Irish Chamber Orchestra as a Community Engagement Programme as part of Limerick’s regeneration process. Working with children and young people of varying ages, the programme enables its participants to build confidence, discipline and teamwork skills through music-making.