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What We Do

The Department Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA) has a dedicated Participation unit. The role of the unit is to ensure that children and young people have a voice in the design, delivery and monitoring of services and policies that affect their lives, at national and local level. It collaborates in this with other Government Departments, statutory bodies and non-government organisations.

The work of the Participation unit is guided by Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and is directed by the belief that children and young people are the citizens of today and not just the adults of tomorrow.

The work of the unit is undertaken through:

  • The development of effective structures for children’s participation in decision-making
  • conducting consultations and dialogues with children and young people
  • The development of evidence-based policy in keeping with national and international best practice.

The DCYA Youth Reform, Strategy and Participation Unit is committed to ensuring the inclusion of seldom-heard children and young people in participation structures and initiatives.