On the right track: Inclusion and Diversity

A new summary in the On the Right Track series is now available, on the theme of Inclusion and Diversity.

This is the fifth summary in the On the right track series, based on evaluations of fifty two programmes and services delivered in Ireland over a twelve year period. Programmes were funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies and government, and used prevention and early intervention approaches to improve outcomes for children and young people in areas such as learning, health, behaviour and parenting.

Inclusion and diversity are now common features of life in Ireland and Northern Ireland. The term diversity refers to the ways that we differentiate people from each other, for example race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, socio economic status and religious or political beliefs. Inclusion is when we actively value, respect and support diversity. Research shows that from a very early age, children understand concepts such as fairness and equality, while children as young as three have shown signs of racial prejudice. Programmes and services for children and young people can encourage children to develop positive attitudes to diversity from an early age.

This new summary is based on findings from five evaluations of programmes delivered under the Prevention and Early Intervention Initiative which focused on inclusion and diversity. The summary includes some key messages for service commissioners when planning services for children and young people, and some learning from the experience of implementing programmes.

The summary is based on a longer report which describes the programmes in greater detail, and developments in the policy context in Ireland and Northern Ireland while the programmes were being delivered.