Youth clubs are local groups for young people, usually aged between 12 and 18 years, with a number of adult leaders. Youth club programmes include recreational and educational activities and give young people experience of organising their own activities in a democratic way. In Ireland, youth clubs are usually run by Foróige, a national voluntary organisation that receives core funding from the Department of Education and Skills.
Foróige works with bodies such as Local Drugs Task Forces, Vocational Educational Committees, an Garda Siochana, the EU Special Support Programme for Peace and Reconciliation, Local Area Partnerships, Local Drugs Task Forces, URBAN and Health Service Executive (HSE) Areas to further youth development. As well as youth clubs, Foróige also provides support to Youth Information Centres.
Foróige is run by a National Council, which decides policy and controls all business and affairs carried out by or on behalf of the organisation. The National Council meets at least twice a year and is made up of one Club Leader for each county where there are Foróige Clubs and four Reference Panel members elected by the Reference Panel, which is a panel designed to give members a direct input into the running of Foróige at national level. The National Council elects, from among its members, a National Executive that meets regularly, usually once a month, and is responsible to the National Council. The National Executive is concerned with the more immediate issues concerning the running of the organisation.
Foróige youth clubs
Foróige youth clubs are structured youth development groups that are made up of young people from the local community. They usually consist of less than 30 young people aged 12-18 years and voluntary adult leaders, in a ratio of approximately 10 to 1. Club members elect their own club committee and manage and operate the club in co-operation with the adult leaders.
Education programmes run by Foróige in its youth clubs
Foróige runs 8 education programmes in:
* Youth co-operative education
* Family and life skills
Foróige Regional Youth Officers
Foróige’s Regional Youth Officers assist Foróige youth clubs, through advice and training, with organisational issues and the development of club programmes.
Foróige youth club leaders
Each Foróige youth club has adult leaders who are the guides and mentors of the club and take collective responsibility for the club. There must be at least one adult leader present in order for a club meeting to take place. The club leaders appoint one of their number to be the overall club leader. This person is eligible to stand for election to Foróige’s National Council and to vote at these elections.
Foróige youth club officers
The following club officers are elected by club members from among the membership:
* The club chairperson
* The club secretary
* The club treasurer
* The club public relations officer.
The Foróige youth club committee
Club officers, the Club Leader and no more than two other members make up the club committee. The club committee is responsible for planning club meetings and ensuring that the tasks involved in the day-to-day management of the club are carried out.
Foróige youth club meetings
Foróige youth clubs usually meet once a week. Every meeting lasts around two hours and includes:
* A formal meeting where members make democratic decisions concerning the club
* Club activities based on Foróige’s education programmes
* Recreational activities, such as sports and games.
Membership fees depend on the individual youth club, but are usually low.
How to apply
You can ask your local youth club about joining or contact Foróige headquarters to see if there is a club near you. You can view a list of Foróige youth clubs here. You may also find information about your local youth club in a community or parish hall.
If you are interested in setting up a club, you should contact Foróige headquarters for help and advice.
Where To Apply
+353 (0)1 630 1560
+353 (0)1 630 1568