Daybreak Programme


Daybreak is an individually tailored education programme to support young people to remain in education. The young people are referred in by schools, social work, EWO, CAMHS, parents and by self referral.

The programme is designed for First Year students through to Junior Certificate.  Daybreak builds on the strengths of the young people to support their personal and academic goals and helps them reach their full potential.

The reasons for referral are varied and some of the issues that arise include dyslexia, ADHD, social anxiety, behaviour & anger issues, and low self – esteem /confidence.

As well as getting help with their academic subjects the young people also receive support in their personal development and we run an excellent programme which involves workshops, discussions, moving debates, videos etc.

The Personal Development Programme

Positive Mental Health, Self-Care & Hygiene, Cookery Skills, Bullying/Cyberbullying, Body Image, Anger Management, LGBT Awareness, Confidence/Self-Esteem, Stress Management, Sexual Health and Study Skills.

The Daybreak Programme Timetable

  1. Letterkenny Monday – Friday throughout the school year 

    Daybreak Field Trips to the Ulster American Folk Park in 2017

  2. Ballybofey outreach 18 days through the school year
  3. Raphoe outreach


Daybreak follows the academic calendar. It is based in the Donegal Youth Service building at 16-18 Port Rd, Letterkenny, with outreach work in Planet Youth, Ballybofey.

It is led by the needs of each individual participant.  Participation is entirely on a voluntary basis for all participants. The programme also offers support to those who need assistance with coping or social skills.

Daybreak is the only formal/informal programme of its kind in Donegal that provides one-to-one and small group intervention to this target group of young people.

Daybreak takes an all-inclusive approach and works directly with the young person, their referrers, families, schools, and other agencies to address each young person’s needs through a combination of formal education and youth work.

Participants identify goals which they aim to address and our aim is to support them in meeting these goals through increased self-esteem, coping skills and communication skills, as well as academic support and re-integration to mainstream education until they have completed their Junior Certificate or until they are 16.

What Daybreak Provides

  • A safe youth friendly space and understanding staff.
  • Low numbers of participants; a max of 6 per day to ensure individually tailored support.
  • Needs led academic support on a one-to-one basis.
  • Group work facilitation and discussion of important youth issues including; relationships, coping strategies, communications, drug and alcohol issues, attitudes towards school, bullying. This provides a medium for peer education and positive relationship building for vulnerable young people, and a space to voice their opinions in a safe circle of trust.
  • Advocacy for vulnerable young people within schools and statutory services such as well as continuous communication with the young person, their family, referrers and with agencies.
  • A listening ear service.
  • Parental support.
  • Research and identification of progression routes and assistance.
  • Group outings and activities.
  • Summer Programme – sports and outings.
  • Real life skills – preparation for the future – cookery, hygiene, money management.

What did young people have to say about Daybreak?

“I’ve changed for the best since I walked through Daybreak’s doors. You can have a laugh, make new friends, talk one to one about your difficulties, and they give you the best advice. It gives you the best opportunities and experience.”

“Daybreak is a safe, relaxed environment where everyone respects each other and I look forward to going each week.”

“My advice to anyone looking to attend Daybreak is to take this great opportunity as it will be a once in a lifetime experience and you will never regret it. You will be amazed at what you can achieve. If I can do it, anyone can as I am a totally different person to that person who walked into Daybreak that first day.”

Please contact us on 074 91 29630 or e-mail claire.bradley@donegalyouthservice.ie for more information about the Daybreak programme.

Funded by:




Daybreak is funded by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs