Concerns Over Cuts To Youth Work

The abolition of the YCNI (Youth Council for Northern Ireland) is “deeply disappointing” says Trevor Boyle, Voluntary Coordinator at Autonomie.

Speaking recently on the imminent closure of the Youth Council for Northern Ireland Mr Boyle said: “The abolition of the YCNI will affect the entire Youth Service which includes crucial inclusive youth work focusing on disability.

“The Youth Council has a track record of providing funding, training and support to major voluntary youth organisations and the most influential benefit has been to the many children and young people who have a disability in being able to access a youth service where they can learn new experiences, make friends and feel part of a community.

“Youth work provides real value to our communities. But Government spending cuts are creating a crisis with skilled workers forced out of the profession, with an increasing reliance on untrained staff and volunteers to work with vulnerable young people.”

Funding changes will take place in April 2016.

Education Minister, John O’Dowd announced in December 2015 that all youth services funded by the Department of Education will in future be provided through the Education Authority.

Mr O’Dowd’s announcement can be read here: