Seanad to debate youth work and Indecon Economic Assessment of Value of Youth Work
against backdrop of €5.4m cut in funding in Budget 2013 – 30% cut since 2008
The Seanad will debate a motion on youth work today (12.12.12) from 5:00 pm. The motion proposed by Senator Jillian van Turnhout will focus on the economic value of youth work, against the background of significant cuts in funding for youth services in the past number of years and in last week’s budget where another 5.4m was cut – representing a 30% overall cut since 2008.
A recent report on the economic value of the sector indicated that for every €1 spent on youth services the state saves €2.2 euro in the long run. The report, Assessment of the Economic Value of youth Work, was prepared by Indecon and published by the National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI).
“We know that youth work makes a real difference in the lives of young people and the communities they live in, but this report now provides hard evidence that youth work is also value for money and makes economic sense,” said Senator van Turnhout, speaking in advance of the debate.
“Youth work services are already working to support young people impacted by the current economic recession, and with sufficient resources could make a much greater contribution to addressing youth unemployment, social exclusion and poverty,” said Mary Cunningham, NYCI Director.
“As the Indecon report shows, the youth work sector is substantial in scale. Over 380,000 young people benefit from a wide range of programmes and services, with the majority of participants coming from areas which are deemed ‘economically and socially disadvantaged’.
“These recent further cuts to the youth work budget are not only socially unfair but also economically unsound. While we understand the pressures on public spending, we also believe that decisions must be informed by the independent and rigorous evidence which suggests that investment in youth work has the capacity to meet the needs of young people impacted by the recession,” concluded Ms Cunningham.
For further information contact Daniel Meister, Communications Manager at NYCI on 087 781 4903, 01-478 4122 or e-mail email@example.com
Notes to Editors:
National Youth Council of Ireland
The National Youth Council of Ireland is a membership-led umbrella organisation that represents and supports the interests of voluntary youth organisations and uses its collective experience to act on issues that impact on young people. www.youth.ie