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Youth Work

Youth work has been enhancing the lives of young people and adults in Ireland for more than 100 years. It was given formal statutory recognition in the Youth Work Act 2001, which defines youth work as:

This page is a one-‘start’-shop for anyone interested in volunteering in youth work. It brings together information on where you can find volunteering opportunities, what a prospective volunteer can expect and what will be expected of you, as well as support, advice, research and a wealth of free downloadable resources!

The National Quality Standards Framework for Youth Work was launched in 2010.

NQSF establishes a single, standardised framework that will act as an overarching structure to ensure and enhance quality service provision.

In December 2001, The Youth Work Act became Law. It confers certain responsibilities onto the Minister for Education and Science, namely to develop and co-ordinate youth work programmes and services including co-ordination with education and other programmes. The purpose of this act is to provide a statutory framework for the provision of youth work programmes and services by the Minister, VECs and by the National and Regional Youth Organisations.

This plan sets out a strategy for the first five-year plan for the development of youth work in Ireland and is the first sustained examination of current youth services and their relationship with other aspects of youth policy and provision.

It explores the challenges facing the youth work sector, depicts a vision of youth work in Ireland and sets goals and actions for the development of youth work from 2003-2007.


NYCI seeks to promote and encourage an intercultural and anti-racist approach as a sustainable feature of youth work in Ireland. We aim to promote equality of opportunity, interaction, understanding, respect and integration between different cultures, ethnic and religious groups as we see difference as something positive that can enrich a society.

The following objectives are included in NYCI's current strategic plan.