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Minister O’Gorman announces LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme

Friday 5th March 2021


Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman, T.D., has today announced a new LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme aimed at LGBTI+ young people.

The LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme will be run by Foróige in collaboration with BelongTo and is open to applications from all LBGTI+ young people. The Programme aims to enable LGBTI+ young people to develop the skills, inspiration, vision, confidence, and action plans to be effective leaders and to empower LGBTI+ young people to make a positive difference to their society and their communities through the practice of effective leadership.

Reflecting the importance of the voice of young people in the LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy, the LGBTI+ Youth Forum was central to the development of the Programme which was informed by their views. One of their priorities for this year, was to see LGBTI+ young leaders be the change-makers in schools, colleges, sports and youth clubs, as well as local communities and families. Young members of the Forum said:

“I’m really enthusiastic about the leadership programme and excited about the educational benefit and experience, I think it will be very beneficial to LGBTQI youth in Ireland.”

“This exciting programme is a great opportunity for the LGBTI+ leaders of today and tomorrow.”

“This programme gives LGBTI+ Youth something for them that is recognised. It gives us hope for the future to come and for our youth.”

“It’s a proud day for the LGBTI+ community when we are given this opportunity to flourish.” 

Launching the programme, Minister O’Gorman said, “I am delighted to announce the launch of this LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme, supporting LGBTI+ young people to develop their leadership skills and build a better world for their peers. The Programme will harness the passion, drive and idealism of our LGBTI+ young people to lead their communities in creating a better society for all of us. This is a key action of the LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy and I am very proud to invite LGBTI+ young people to apply to take part.”

Moninne Griffith, CEO of BeLonG To Youth Services, said:

“We are thrilled to collaborate with the Department of Children, Disability, Equality, Integration and Youth, Foróige, and the LGBTI+ Youth Forum to launch the LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme.

Young people of today are the next generation of CEOs, politicians, teachers, and leaders. With this initiative, we will empower LGBTI+ young people to harness their leadership skills and become change-makers across Irish society, bringing more diverse voices to decision-making tables.

Building strong youth leadership is core to creating a fairer, more inclusive Ireland where LGBTI+ young people feel safe, equal, and valued.”



More details on the LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme and how to apply are available with this online registration form. Closing date for applications: Tuesday the 23rd of March at 12 noon.




Notes to Editor:

  • The Department of Children, Disability, Equality, Integration and Youth supports and encourages young people to be leaders and future leaders, and has launched the LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme specifically aimed at developing the young LGBTI+ leaders of the future.
  • This fulfils action 5(d) of the LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy to develop a leadership programme for young LGBTI+ leaders and potential leaders.
  • Plans and requirements for the LGBTI+ Youth Leadership Programme were developed by the LGBTI+ Youth Forum, a diverse group of 25 young people aged from 16 to 22 years, who identify as LGBTI+ and who support implementation of the LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy.
  • Foróige, in conjunction with BeLonG To, adapted their “Leadership for Life” Programme to meet those requirements and to provide an appropriate programme for LGBTI+ and ally young leaders and potential leaders. The Foróige Leadership for Life Programme was developed over 10 years ago in partnership with NUI, Galway.
  • The programme will be delivered online, with a mixture of interactive and engaging methodologies to meet the learning outcomes and objectives.
  • Two of the three modules are taught and participants have the option of completing a third self-directed module in order to achieve a Level 6 certificate from NUIG.