Written Answers. - Outdoor Pursuit Centres.

79.

asked the Minister for Education when the policy outlined in the White Paper regarding outdoor pursuit centres will be put into definite operation.

The White Paper,In Partnership with Youth, which outlines a comprehensive national youth policy is being implemented on a phased basis. As part of the policy, responsibility for youth affairs and appropriate staff were transferred from the Department of Labour to my Department earlier this year. The pivotal structure for implementing the policy is the national youth service, involving the establishment of a nationwide framework of local youth service boards. It is proposed to establish 15 ad hoc local youth service boards in 1986 with the remaining boards coming into operation in 1987. Grants to youth organisations have been increased in 1986. These increased funds allow for the employment of additional youth workers and the expansion and development of programmes for young people. Additional funds have also been made available for increased inservice training of youth workers, for programme development and for the establishment of a youth exchange bureau as proposed in the policy. The matter of outdoor pursuits centres, will be further pursued with the relevant authorities as part of the gradual implementation of the proposals in the White Paper In Partnership with Youth, subsequent to the establishment and coming into operation of the local youth service boards and in the light of resources available.