For Oral Answer on : 02/06/2022
Question Number(s): 37 Question Reference(s): 28356/22
Department: Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Minister for Children; Equality; Disability; Integration and Youth if his Department has, or plans to introduce a funding scheme in place to support youth clubs and organisations with the purchase of mini-buses to facilitate youth activities; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
My Department does not currently have any plans to provide a funding scheme for the purchase of a fleet of vehicles, including mini-buses, for youth services. Any future plans by my Department is likely to involve consultation with my colleagues the Minister for Community and Rural Development and Minister for Transport to co-ordinate any actions in this regard.
The 2022 capital budget available to the youth areas of my Department is €2.7 million. Of this, €2.25 million is utilised to meet the capital needs of national youth organisations, UBU funded organisations, youth information centres and youth clubs receiving funding from my Department.
In view of the limited capital funding available for distribution on an annual basis, the Youth Affairs Unit oversees the administration of annual youth capital funding schemes for the national youth organisations and the youth services and youth clubs within the functional areas of the sixteen Education and Training Boards.
These capital schemes make available small grants which support the purchase of essential equipment and the completion of minor works, including adapting of outside areas for working with young people, ventilation, sanitary facilities and health and safety requirements.
While there are currently no plans for a funding scheme specifically for the purchase of mini-buses, the youth capital funding scheme which operated in 2021 included approved funding for the purchase of four transport vehicles by our funded youth services and a further purchase of a minibus by a national youth organisation. Completed applications for funding under the 2022 youth capital funding scheme are due to be received in my Department in the coming days and it Is likely that these applications will also include funding requests for the purchase of transport vehicles for our youth services.