A National Quality Standards Framework for youth work was introduced in January 2011. This framework applies to all staff-led youth work organisations, services, projects and programmes which are funded under the following Department of Children and Youth Affairs schemes:
Youth Service Grant Scheme
Special Projects for Youth
Young People’s Facilities and Services Funds 1 and 2
Youth Information Centres
Reformed Youth Funding Stream
The primary function of the NQSF is as a support and development tool for youth work services funded by the DCYA. Its aim is to assist youth work organisations to identify strengths and areas for development in their services and to benchmark progress accordingly. Having done so, services take a structured and developmental approach to the assessment of youth work provision, examining its level, impact and efficacy. The role of the ETB is to facilitate and oversee this process with DCYA-funded youth work services in its operational area.
National Quality Standards for Volunteer-led Youth Groups
Through the Local Youth Club Grant Scheme, funded by the Department of Children and Youth affairs, the ETB directly supports over 100 youth groups in Cavan and Monaghan catering for more than 5,000 young people. These groups provide a wide range of recreational and developmental programmes and activities for young people.
As a natural progression to the NQSF for staff-led projects, the Department has rolled out a set of National Quality Standards for Volunteer-led Youth Groups. Developed in consultation with partners in the youth work sector, these quality standards are aimed at local youth groups and clubs. They present an opportunity for youth groups to demonstrate their commitment to best practice and to the delivery of quality programmes and activities, which meet the needs and expectations of their young members. Following initial briefing sessions in 2013, the standards were rolled out nationally and in this region during 2014. All youth groups funded through the Local Youth Club Grant Scheme are required to engage in the standards process.
Youth groups affiliated to national youth organisations should consult with the Regional Youth / Development Officer of their parent organisation in relation to the standards. ETB Youth Officers will provide similar support and guidance to youth groups not affiliated to a national youth organisation / other locally active groups.
Full guidance notes are available in the Volunteer Group Leaders’ Guide to National Quality Standards for Volunteer-led Youth Groups booklet.