YMCA Ireland works with 26,000 young people and families. Over it’s long history it has been involved in working with young people on signature programmes in vocational training, family youth-work, leadership development and international engagement. The programmes target young people with fewer opportunities and those on the margins of society.
Its services aim to re-engage young people and families through youth-work methodologies and experiential learning processes. Programmes are often customised to meet the needs of individuals and new technology often plays an integral part of the experience.
Family youth work
The greatest influence on any child’s development is the family unit. Many YMCA programmes aim to work with the whole family, providing opportunities for parents and carers to gain from peer and other supports while providing experiences to develop shared memories with their children.
Example of a Family Youth Work Programme
PAKT (Parents and Kids Together) is one of the longest established family youth work programmes in the YMCA. It offers a suite of activities for children in the 6-16 age group as well as fun family activities where the emphasis is on inter-generational learning. PAKT operates in Dublin City, West Dublin, Ballincollig, Bantry and Cobh. A PAKT manual has been developed and this helps ensure the core ethos of the programme is maintained in local centres