More than €440,000 is being provided by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs to create a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment for LGBTI+ young people.
The funding will allow organisations working with young people to undertake training, mentoring, coaching, and development policies.
LGBT Ireland chief executive Paula Fagan welcomed the funding announcement by Katherine Zappone, the children’s and youth affairs minister.
“This is a very positive step as this funding is fundamental to providing essential LGBT+ services,” said Ms Fagan.
“Moreover, this should become part of government policy and monies ring-fenced on an annual basis to meet the demand and needs for such services across the country.”
Ms Zappone said funding is being provided through phase two of the LGBTI+ Capacity Building Initiative.
The initiative “aims to support the development of better, more supportive services nationwide for LGBTI+ young people, through sharing of knowledge and expertise”, said Ms Zappone.
It is part of the LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy, which was published in June 2018 and is the first of its kind in the world.
“We are committed to ensuring that LGBTI+ young people are widely supported and have the confidence to be themselves and actively participate in all aspects of society without fear of harassment and discrimination,” said Ms Zappone .
Last year, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs administered €165,686 for phase one of capacity building initiatives in LGBTI+ specific organisations or services.
The total amount allocated across phase one and two in 2019 and 2020 is €446,558.
During consultations on the strategy, young LGBTI+ people suggested ways to deal with difficult issues such as discrimination, stigma, bullying, and harassment.
They said they wanted better training for professionals engaging with LGBTI+ young people, enforcement of anti-bullying policies, and to address the health and wellbeing of LGBTI+ young people.
The creation of a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment is one of the goals identified in the three-year strategy.
Improving physical, mental, and sexual health and developing research and data to better understand the lives of young people in the LGBTI+ community are the two other main goals.
The mission of the strategy is to ensure all LGBTI+ young people are visible, valued, and included.