The North-South Practice Development Hub

About North-South Youth Work Sector Practice Development Hub

The North-South Practice Development Hub has been established to strengthen and develop sustainable north-south youth work sector relationships among and between organisations, staff and volunteers, and enhance the quality of the learning experience of young people participating in youth services across the island.


  • Provide a forum and platform for the sharing of strategies, research, policies, publications and resources that enhance the quality and impact of youth work and youth services, in particular, as the sector emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Create opportunities and spaces (conferences, workshops, seminars, focus groups, etc.) for organisations, staff and volunteers to come together around specific themes and areas of practice, share learning, experience, knowledge and skills.
  • Act as a catalyst and conduit for increased cross-border co-operation and collaboration (acting as a point of connection, signposting, bonding, bridging, linking) between youth work organisations and practitioners – including opportunities for young people.
  • Distil and articulate (through a series of short briefing papers, reviews and reports) the core elements of effective youth work practice, its contribution to the personal and social development of young people and public policy objectives on the island of Ireland.

The North-South Youth Work Sector Practice Development Hub is a joint initiative between the National Youth Council of Ireland and the Education Authority Youth Service, Northern Ireland

Recent Collaborations

Reclaiming Youth Work: A return to the founding principles of Youth Work during the Covid-19 pandemic


An ARK Policy Brief paper resulting from the Roundtable session in November 2020 involving over 30 leaders from the youth work sector, academics, policy makers, professionals from the justice system and government departmental officials (North and South).

Report on the ‘Where are we now?’ – workshop for Youth Work managers


Reflecting on the contribution of the youth work sector in supporting young people to live, work and play – in a pandemic. A joint NYCI-EA Youth Service event in collaboration with YouthPact attended by 90 managers from across the island of Ireland.

Unfolding narrative from Covid-19: personal and professional wellness in practice


Led by Dr. Breda Friel (UU). 52 youth work managers from across the island attended. The session was designed as a reflective space for participants and an opportunity for reflection on, in and about practice in the pandemic, whilst considering signature strengths.