Working with Partners – Donegal Children and Young People’s Services Committee (CYPSC)

Image of person speaking.
Donegal CYPSC Coordinator Anne Timony Meehan.

We work in partnership with a wide range of organisations locally, regionally, nationally and internationally. Locally, within the county, we are a partner organisation of the Donegal Children and Young People’s Services Committee (CYPSC). What is this and what does this involve? In this blog, Donegal CYPSC Coordinator Anne Timony Meehan tells us more about it.

Children and Young People’s Services Committees (CYPSC) are a key structure identified by Government to plan and co-ordinate services for children and young people in every county in Ireland.  The overall purpose is to improve outcomes for children and young people through local and national interagency working.

CYPSCs are county-level committees that bring together the main statutory, community and voluntary providers of services to children and young people.  They provide a forum for joint planning and co-ordination of activity to ensure that children, young people and their families receive improved and accessible services. Their role is to enhance interagency co-operation and to realise the national outcomes set out in Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures: the national policy framework for children and young people 2014 – 2020CYPSC: Shared Vision, Next Steps provides the road map for the further development of the CYPSC initiative over the period 2019 – 24.

Informed by a universal approach, the ultimate goal is to improve outcomes for all children and young people in Ireland.

Donegal ETB is a highly valued partner agency in Donegal Children and Young People’s Services Committee (CYPSC) and has been an active and energetic partner agency since the very beginning. In fact, Donegal ETB was a founding partner agency on Donegal CYPSC going right back to the original pilot project, then known as the Children’s Service Committee, established in 2007.

Donegal CYPSC has grown exponentially over the years since then with currently over fifty local agencies, both statutory and community and voluntary, across all sectors who work together to improve outcomes for children and young people across Donegal.

Donegal ETB has always embraced the concept of inter-agency working and is an active collaborator often taking a leading role to implement projects and providing funding support to collaborative projects in the education sphere.

Anne McHugh, CE Donegal ETB, as Master of Ceremonies for the Donegal CYPSC Celebration of Achievement Event in March 2022, emphasized Donegal ETB’s belief in inter-agency collaboration in her summation of the event as follows:

“Our (CYPSC) event was a fantastic and uplifting way to celebrate the very many wonderful ways in which we are contributing to our county by working collaboratively to achieve the best outcomes for our children and young people.  The presentations covered all of our national outcomes and are both innovative and forward thinking in how they connect to the communities of this county.”

The influence and contribution of Donegal ETB in the work of Donegal CYPSC has grown over time with representatives currently on six of the eight CYPSC Subcommittees:

  1. Strategy Committee
  2. Health and Wellbeing Subcommittee
  3. Education and Learning Subcommittee
  4. Safe and Secure Subcommittee
  5. Youth Participation Subcommittee
  6. Change Management Subcommittee
Three people.
Donegal ETB Chief Executive Anne Mc Hugh MC with Bernard Gloster CEO Tusla and Gerry Hone Regional Chief Officer Tusla, at the launch of the Donegal Children and Young Peoples Plan 2021-2023.

These subcommittees all benefit from the expertise and knowledge of the education and training sector, youth work, and ETB Alcohol and Other Drugs Awareness and Skills training programme as well as the innovative ideas and team spirit Donegal ETB staff bring to each group. The Donegal ETB representatives are actively involved in all areas of CYPSC work from local research, consultation with young people, consultation with practitioners, development of the three-year strategic Children and Young Peoples Plan, to taking a lead on specific projects such as the resource ‘Promoting Positive School Attendance in Donegal’ which was a collaboration with Tess.

Donegal ETB also chairs the Education and Learning Subcommittee and is a key partner and funder in the Read DL project. This is an annual Community Literacy project, jointly funded by Donegal ETB and ATU Letterkenny, which runs for six weeks every Spring.

This project began as an idea of the Education and Learning Subcommittee many, many, many moons

Young people reading a book that covers their faces.
Youthreach students reading Wonder during Read DL.

ago as Read LK, morphed into Read DL a county wide project, and continues to garner great success and wide community engagement across primary and post-primary schools, libraries, Youthreach Centres, reading groups, community organisations etc. During the COVID-19 lockdowns, the innovative Read DL committee took on the challenge and mid-project moved online, engaging even larger numbers of young people and their families in a range of outreach online activities. This year Donegal CYPSC is delighted to be able to provide some additional funding to support its outreach activities and events across the County.

Check out some highlights of our Festive Gathering event on 23 November 2022 through this link:

Further information on Donegal CYPSC can be found on our website here: and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.