Donegal Youth Service Annual Report 2019:
Another busy year supporting Young People
Donegal Youth Service engaged a total of 15,170 young people across the county in 2019 through a wide range of programmes and activities.
DYS Regional Director Lorraine Thompson said: “I am delighted to invite you to view the Donegal Youth Service annual report for 2019. DYS as an organisation is the largest it has ever been both in the range of services we offer to young people and the numbers of young people we are engaging with. The service is constantly offering new opportunities for young people and innovative programmes to engage young people in fun learning environments. It is a pleasure to work in such a dynamic and professional environment where everyone is trying to make young people’s lives better.”
Some highlights from 2019 include the Young Carers Project that supported 50 young people, with 2 young people travelling to the EU Parliament in Brussels for the EU Informal Young Carers meeting in September. The Letterkenny Youth Information Centre answered 6132 queries over the year, and delivered 201 Internet Safety sessions. The LOFT worked with 2160 young people through a range of programmes, and one parent said: “I can’t thank the staff at the LOFT enough, I don’t know where my family would have turned without them. My daughter has really gained so much from her experience there.”
Donegal Youth Service offers a wide range of programmes and services to young people from LGBTI+ support, to training, information, European opportunities, Internet Safety and Cyberbullying workshops, summer programmes, evening groups, educational support, and one-to-one support.
One of the many highlights from 2019 include the Youth Forum winning the ‘Online Award’ for their video ‘Take My Breath Away’ at the National X-Hale Awards, an initiative from the Irish Cancer Society working towards a tobacco free generation.
Another highlight was the ‘Baile as Baile’ or ‘Home from Home’ Project which was developed to work with and welcome Syrian young people who had recently come to live in Donegal after a long and difficult journey. This project was a partnership with the DLDC’s Resettlement Programme. As part of the project a Donegal Youth Service leaflet was produced in Arabic to welcome young people to the service, there was also a weekly sports initiative, as well as three Syrian feasts that were shared with the local community.
2019 also saw the launch of ‘The Garage Project’, which was an exciting new initiative with Pro-Social Driving that aimed to provide young people with a greater understanding and respect for Donegal roads. Thirty young people worked under the instruction of two professional mechanics every week. Young people were recruited from various agencies and groups including the probation services.
DYS Year in Numbers: ‘In 2019 15,170 young people engaged in our service and were supported by 29 staff and 437 Adult Volunteers. A variety of training programmes were provided to 1,458 adults and 6,454 young people. During 2019 DYS facilitated over 900 hours of one to one listening ear support via Youth Talk. Support was also provided to 25 Youth Clubs across Donegal and we hosted 18 public events in 2019. Our work would not have been possible without our 59 Strategic Partners.’
For more information about any Donegal Youth Service programmes and supports please visit www.donegalyouthservice.ie, or find DYS on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. DYS is currently offering a mix of online and offline services in line with Government recommendations. Donegal Youth Service is a registered charity. Registered charity number: 20050696.
Read the full annual report below: