Donegal’s youth group for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) ‘BreakOut’ has been given the official thumbs up by BeLong To, the national organisation for LGBT young people.
BeLonG To Youth Service awards accreditation to LGBT youth groups as a mark of the quality of service delivery and support that they deliver.
To get the stamp of approval organisations must meet a set standard in six criteria including ethos, training, child protection, youth leadership, critical social education and partnership.
Speaking at the Accreditation ceremony today (September 12) Michael Barron, Executive Director of BeLonG To Youth Services, said: “We’re delighted to Accredit the BreakOut group in Donegal Youth Services.
“The commitment of the team in Donegal Youth Services in supporting LGBT young people is being acknowledged as meeting best practice here in Ireland and internationally.
“I would like to express our thanks to the Health Promotion Department of the HSE (Western Region) for their support and funding to ensure this vital support service is available in the county.”
BreakOut now has LGBT youth groups in two towns, Letterkenny & Buncrana and has worked with over 50 young people over the last year.
The groups meet weekly and participate in the annual Stand Up! LGBT Awareness Week aimed at ending homophobic and transphobic bullying in schools and communities across Ireland.
Lorraine Thompson, Regional Director of Donegal Youth Services said “We are delighted to accept this Accreditation for BreakOut, since the inception of the project it has expanded and developed, shaped by the young people themselves and in keeping with the quality standards of Donegal Youth Service. We are very proud of the work of BreakOut including the young people, staff and volunteers who make it the success that it is.”
BeLonG To’s National Development Project commenced in 2007 and now has 22 groups operating in 14 counties in the Republic of Ireland.
BeLonG To Youth Services is the national organisations for lesbian, gay, bisexual & trans* young people in Ireland.
The National Development Project is kindly supported by funding from the HSE’s National Office for Suicide Prevention.