Supporting the Children and Young People Services Committees

Status: Ongoing

Background

Children and Young People’s Services Committees are interagency committees that bring together the main statutory, community and voluntary providers of services for children and young people in a county. Their purpose is to ensure joint planning and co-ordination of services for children and young people up to the age of 24, in every county in Ireland. Their goal is to realise the five national outcomes for children and young people stated in ‘Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures – The National Policy Framework for Children and Young People 2014 – 2020’.

Four committees were initially established in 2007 as part of the Working Together for Children Initiative in Dublin City, Limerick City, Donegal and South Dublin on a pilot basis to explore the potential for interagency working. A new development in national policy in 2014 saw the remit of the committees expanded from their original role as Children’s Services Committees to Children and Young Peoples Services Committees. The age profile was broadened to embrace young people up to 24 years of age. In 2015, coverage reached 23 counties and 27 local authority areas. 

Children and Young Peoples Services Committees are a key local structure to ensure that children, young people and their families receive improved and accessible services.

Overview of CES work

CES has been providing vital strategic and implementation support to the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) and Children and Young Peoples Services Committees since 2009. Since June 2013, CES has hosted the National Co-ordinator for Children and Young People's Services Committees on behalf of DCYA. CES also provides project support for the Initiative. The National Co-ordinator, located at CES, works closely with the Department to strategically develop CYPSC and provide implementation support to the county-level committees. This has included organising national learning events and seminars, building understanding and commitment amongst stakeholders from a variety of sectors, and the development and management of the national website www.cypsc.ie. The website provides a central information point for this national interagency approach while also providing a gateway to local county-level CYPSCs and an overview of their local work.

Around the country, Children and Young Peoples Services Committees have led and supported inspiring and positive innovations in the fields of Youth Mental Health, Literacy Development, Parenting Support, Information Sharing and Early Childhood Development to improve outcomes for children and young people; always with an emphasis on interagency collaboration and co-ordination.