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Foreword

This resource was devised as a guide for youth workers and volunteers in promoting intercultural youth work across the youth sector in Ireland. It is a guide that any youth service, club or project can use to become a more inclusive service, reaching as many young people in the local community as possible, and ensuring those young people feel welcome to return as regular participants.

The resource is laid out as 12 Steps to Good Practice in Intercultural Youth Work. Each step covers a different aspect of youth work from the practicalities of creating an inclusive environment in your organisation (Step 2 – Space & Environment) to effectively monitoring the impact of your work (Step 11 – Monitoring and Evaluation). Each Step contains a description of what your youth organisation can do, methods and good practice examples from other youth work organisations around Ireland, additional resources and training to consult as necessary, and a list of indicators to measure how you are doing, and how you can go further.In order to be a guide for the whole youth sector in promoting intercultural youth work, the “12 Steps” guide uses the term ‘your organisation’ to refer to all projects, clubs and services within the youth work sector.

NYCI devised the “12 Steps” guide based on positive examples of intercultural youth work in Ireland, and good practice internationally. The 12 Steps are not laid out in any particular order of importance. None of the youth work organisations we feature went through each Step from 1 to 12 in full or in order. The 12 Steps are very much an ideal scenario of what your organisation can achieve. In reality, many services, projects and clubs will fulfil some of the 12 Steps, but not others. Some of the Steps you may already have attained, and some of the Steps might be reached easily in your organisation or with your group. In some cases, you may choose to adopt some of the practices in a particular Step, but not all of them. Other Steps may become long-term goals for your organisation and a means to map out the direction you wish to take over the coming years.

In creating this resource, we interviewed 8 individual services, projects and clubs, from different youth work organisations and in different parts of Ireland – ranging from inner city projects to rural areas and suburban outskirts. Each featured organisation reflects different practices in youth work, but all have led on an intercultural approach for several years.  The organisations, their workers and volunteers have done this in different ways, but always by focusing on the needs of each young person, and finding ways to reach out and include young people from minority ethnic communities in the local area.

NYCI would like to thank all youth services, clubs and projects around Ireland who participated in the writing of this resource, for their time, their feedback and the use of their photographs.