YouthStart Consortium Launch


Today marks the official launch of the exciting new programme for young people ‘YouthStart’. The programme partnership will support over 2200 young people throughout Northern Ireland over the next 2 years (2023-2025).  This youth employability programme, which is founded on a youth work approach, aims to build young people’s skills for life, learning and work. YouthStart has received £6m from the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Focusing on people aged 16-30 who are economically inactive and furthest from the labour market, this intervention will provide support to build confidence, employability skills, life skills and improve opportunities to enter and sustain employment. Highly skilled staff will provide an extensive holistic approach tailored to individual needs. Young people will have the opportunity to take part in social actions, team building, gain qualifications, avail of supported work experiences, and develop CV and interview skills.

The YouthStart consortium consists of seven leading youth work charities; YouthAction Northern Ireland, Springboard Opportunities, The  Prince’s Trust NI, Include Youth, Start360, NI Youth Forum and Bytes; all experienced in providing transformative intervention support that meets the needs of young people. Together, the consortium will support young people across all eleven council areas within Northern Ireland, responding to local needs and tackling the Government’s asks of addressing the high levels of economic inactivity across Northern Ireland.

Lead Partner YouthAction NI’s CEO, Martin McMullan says “The launch of YouthStart today is extremely significant; it will impact the lives of over 2000 young people throughout Northern Ireland. Being able to provide this level of extensive employability support to young people is crucial, as by investing in our young people now, will have a significant impact in the future. This programme will allow us to tackle the high levels of economic activity and provide opportunities for young people to live a fulfilling life.”

Quote from young person “I just started YouthStart a few weeks ago and already people can see a difference in me. I am more confident, I am gaining qualifications and I feel hopeful as I have a plan for my future.

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