Youth clubs in Kildare are set to benefit from €149,558 in funding, Fine Gael TD for Kildare South and Chairman of the Parliamentary Party, Martin Heydon said.

Deputy Heydon said: “I am delighted that Kildare will benefit from a new funding increase of 12% for the Local Youth Club Grant Scheme for 2019.

“The increased funding will bring the overall allocation for Kildare to €149,558 and will provide small volunteer-led youth clubs with greater capacity to reach more young people in Kildare during 2019.

“The Local Youth Club Grant Scheme supports youth work activities at a local level by providing grant aid towards the cost of running clubs and groups and is part funded by the proceeds from the National Lottery.

“The primary focus of the scheme is to assist volunteer-led youth clubs that provide a programme of youth work activities for young people.

“Clubs that work with young people but are not specifically providing youth work may also be eligible to apply under the scheme.”

Deputy Heydon continued: “The scheme, which is open to new entrants, will be advertised locally and applications for funding will be invited by our Education and Training Board from local groups in their respective areas.

“Our ETB will be advertising the scheme on its website over the coming months.

“The impact of small clubs working on the ground here in Kildare is huge, reaching practically every community in the country – and is deserving of Government support.

“Through their efforts young people in Kildare are developing their talents, skills and experiences which will make them leaders of the future.

“This additional funding will mean a greater volume of volunteer-led youth activities over the next year. I encourage every volunteer club or group to check locally for application details and see how it can benefit their work.”

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone, said: “The scheme is open to over 1,600 youth groups and clubs, with an estimated 90,000 club members around the country.

“In every part of the country which I have had the opportunity to visit, I have seen at first hand the important impact that youth clubs have on local communities and the lives of young people who attend these clubs.

“These clubs are providing adventure, activities and opportunities for our young people.”