I propose to take Questions Nos. 594 and 595 together.
The Youth Affairs Unit of my Department supports the delivery of a range of youth work programmes and services for all young people, including those from disadvantaged communities, by the voluntary youth sector. These programmes include the Youth Service Grant Scheme, the Special Projects for Youth Scheme, the Young People’s Facilities and Services Fund Rounds 1 and 2, Local Drug Task Force Projects and certain other programmes including the Local Youth Club Grant Scheme, Youth Information Centres, the European Youth in Action Programme (administered by Léargas – the Exchange Bureau) and Gaisce – the President’s Award. In 2014, an amount of €50.530m, including €750,000 in capital funding, has been made available for these programmes.
In 2013, an amount of €1.75m was provided for capital projects in the provision of services for young people. This involved an allocation of €1.5m for new youth cafés and €250,000 for the provision of play and recreation facilities.
Some 95 applications were received for the 2013 Youth Café Programme. Three applications were received from groups in Co Meath as follows:
- The Garden House, Gernonstown, Slane, Co Meath
- The Aisling Group, Navan, Co Meath
- Involve, Meath traveller’s Workshop, Navan, Co Meath
No application was received in respect of a new youth café facility in Athboy, Co Meath.
I am pleased to inform the Deputy that the application from the Garden House, Slane was successful and that the project has been provisionally allocated an amount of €50,000 towards the cost of a new youth café facility. Pobal is now working with this project to develop its proposal further and to bring it successfully to pre-contract stage.
The new capital funding programme for 2014 involves €750,000 for the provision of youth services to young people throughout the country. It comprises €250,000 for play and recreation initiatives and €500,000 for staff-led youth projects under the various schemes funded by Youth Affairs Unit of my Department. Details of the youth projects capital scheme, including the application process, are being finalised at present. Pobal will assist my Department with the application and appraisal process. Detailed information and guidelines for applying for the funding will be available in the second quarter of 2014.
With regard to youth service provision in Co. Meath, an amount of €89,625 was provided to the Meath Youth Together Project in 2013 under the Special Projects for Youth Scheme. Some €46,200 was provided to the Co. Meath area under my Department’s 2013 Local Youth Club Grants Scheme. Details of the 2014 allocations under these schemes are being finalised at present and youth services will be advised of their 2014 allocations in the coming weeks.