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Participants in the Footsteps Programme pictured with Gwen Lanigan and Allen McAdam, International Fund for Ireland at a celebration event to mark their successful achievements in the programme over the past year. Operated and managed by Connect Family Resource Centre, the Footsteps Programme is designed to help young people build and develop life skills that foster good relations, build confidence and resilience and enhance their employability skills.

Drogheda participants celebrate successful achievements in ‘Footsteps’ Personal Youth Development Programme

Published on:  28 Sep 2018

Participants, staff and community representatives from Drogheda came together in the Connect Family Resource Centre, Drogheda today to celebrate the achievements of the participants of the Footsteps programme, a Personal Youth Development Programme, funded by the International Fund for Ireland (IFI).  The programme is operated and managed by Connect Family Resource Centre, in association with local community, statutory and voluntary organisations. There are currently twelve young people aged between 16-22 years of age from the Drogheda area participating in the programme.

The Footsteps Programme is designed to help young people build and develop life skills that foster good relations, build confidence and resilience and enhance their employability skills.  The young people participate in a range of programmes that are individualised and bespoke and meet their developmental and educational needs. 

Over the year-long programme, participants engaged in a range of vocational and personal development programmes as well as group activities. The skills training and development programmes ranged from  Junior Success Skills, PX2, Coaching Badges, Health & Beauty, Manual Handling, Driver’s Theory and Driver’s Test and QQI level 4 accredited courses in ICT and Security. Some of these programmes were provided and delivered with support from Louth & Meath Education Training Board & Louth Leader Partnership.

The project also aims to create a greater awareness of reconciliation and peace building with the young people and a crucial component of the programme includes cross border visits and activities such as a trip to Belfast to meet with other young people and attend a tour of Crumlin Road Gaol. 

An integral aspect of the work programme is the local interagency collaboration and involvement. Local voluntary and statutory agencies include LMETB, Tusla, Drogheda Boys Football Club, Respond Housing, Garda diversion projects, Foróige, Youth Work Ireland, Juvenile Liaison Officer, Community Gardaí and the probation services. 

Speaking at the event, Allen McAdam, Board Member of the International Fund for Ireland, said: “The Fund was delighted to support this initiative under its Personal Youth Development Programme which has successfully enabled young people to reassess and take active steps to improve their prospects. The PYDP was created to enable younger generations to shape a better, more peaceful society and projects like this are critical to make our aim a reality.  The Footsteps programme is designed to enable young people to involve themselves consciously and actively in their own development, through developing resilience and enhancing their education, training and employability capacity and prospects. The programme has proved a great success to date and I would like to congratulate the participants and everyone involved in the project for their enthusiastic support and participation. I have no doubt it will be of great benefit to them personally and to their communities in future years”.  

Allen McAdam took the opportunity to thank the international donors to the Fund - the European Union and the Governments of the United States of America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand - for their support.

Project Co-Coordinators, Cliodhna Cunningham & Susan Breen thanked the IFI for the funding support, “without which ‘Footsteps’ would not have been possible and we are indebted to the IFI for their support.

The initiative has been successful in actively engaging twelve young people, all of whom were not in any form of education, training or employment. The success of the project is built on having a clear vision for the initiative and on the hard work and dedication of many. I would like to thank most sincerely all our local partners who have played a significant role in the success of the project to date and I look forward to working with everyone to build on this success in the months ahead”.  

The Personal Youth Development Programme (PYDP) was launched in late 2015 within the IFI’s Community Consolidation - Peace Consolidation 2016-2020 Strategy. The Programme aims to help young people build and develop life skills that foster good relations, build confidence and resilience and make them more employable.

For further information about our funding programmes, or for information on how to apply for funding, please contact the person(s) or organisation(s) identifed at the end of the relevant programme summary in the areas of activity section.

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