Quality and Capacity Building Initiative (QCBI)
In the past 10 years there has been considerable policy, practice and organisational developments in the range of sectors and settings working with and for children and young people. A common theme in these developments is an increasing focus on early intervention and prevention approaches informed by best available evidence to achieve better outcomes for children and young people. Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures: The National Policy Framework for Children and Young People 2014 – 2020 identifies Prevention and Early Intervention as a key transformational goal for children and young people’s services. When Prevention and Early Intervention is based on best available evidence, using the best approaches and delivered by the best placed people, this has significant benefits for children, young people and their families and is also an effective and efficient use of resources.
The Quality and Capacity Building Initiative (QCBI), funded under Dormant Accounts, aims to take a coordinated approach to enhance capacity, knowledge and quality in prevention and early intervention for children, young people and their families, with a focus on those at risk of developing poor outcomes. At the core of the initiative is a desire to foster persistent curiosity amongst those working to improve the lives of children and young people in Ireland. The QCBI aims to support key groups working with children, young people and families to know what works, how it works and provide an evidence supported approach to the application of this work.
Four key strands have been identified to embed and enhance prevention and early intervention in children and young people’s policy, service provision and practice and these four strands under the QCBI are as follows:
1. Data working strand: The aim of this strand to improve access and use of data and information relating to children, young people and their families by aligning and developing what currently exists in this area.
2. Evidence working strand: The aim of this strand is to harness the learning from prevention and early intervention initiatives and research and actively support the use of this learning as a source and resource to inform planning, delivery, evaluation and continuous improvements.
3. Professional development and capacity building working strand: The aim of this strand is to enhance the capacity and skills development of policymakers, providers and practitioners in the appraisal and application of evidence informed approaches in prevention and early intervention for children and young people through capacity building and development.
4. Quality working strand: The aim of this strand is to align, enhance and sustain quality in prevention and early intervention as it relates to the development and delivery of policy, provision and practice for children and young people.
We are delighted to announce the launch of the 2019 “Network Support Fund” to support statutory, community, and voluntary organisations leading or co-ordinating networks, learning communities or fora promoting increased understanding and use of evidence informed approaches to prevention and early intervention services for children, young people and their families. The activities funded should focus on building on existing or emerging best practice in the areas of prevention and early intervention for children, young people and their families. We encourage applications from Networks made up of specific disciplines, such as Teachers, Public Health Nurses, Social Care workers, as well as multidisciplinary networks.
While additionality is a condition of funding, we expect that successful applicants will include existing collaborations that seek to enhance their practice and share their learning and challenges in a more structured, systematic and reflective manner.
The funding is being provided under strand three of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs’ (DCYA) Quality and Capacity Building Initiative (QCBI):
Professional development and capacity building working strand: The aim of this strand is to enhance the capacity and skills development of policymakers, providers and practitioners in the appraisal and application of evidence informed approaches in prevention and early intervention for children and young people through capacity building and development.
QCBI Network Support Fund
The capacity of policy makers, providers and practitioners in the appraisal and application of evidence informed prevention and early intervention approaches is enhanced through provision of collaborative programmes of development eg coaching, mentoring and networking, with a view to improving outcomes for children, young people and their families.
- To improve the use of evidence informed approaches to service design and delivery for children and young people and their families;
- To facilitate formal and informal knowledge sharing explicitly focussed on enhancing professional dialogue and curiosity around evidence informed prevention and early intervention
- To bring stakeholders together to consider latest thinking and practices and learn from best practice nationally and internationally
- To Increase capacity to adopt an evidence informed approach including:
- needs analysis
- uses of data
- service design
- outcomes focused planning
- monitoring, evaluation and review
- Peer to peer networking and knowledge sharing events
- Knowledge sharing tools or resource development
- Training workshops and seminars
- Action Learning Sets
- Coaching and mentoring programmes
- Facilitator fees
- Venue hire and catering
- Administration costs – not to exceed 15% of overall funding awarded
- Substitution/cover costs
- Staff costs
- Capital costs
- Equipment purchase & rental
- Costs already specifically covered by other funding
- Funding for individuals
- Travel costs
The QCBI Network Support Fund is funded by DCYA using Dormant Accounts Funding. Limited funding is available to support this scheme.
The QCBI Network Support Fund will be open to applications for funding support on a rolling basis, meaning that you can apply at any-time during the year and decisions are made several times per year.
The 2019 QCBI Network Support Fund is open for applications until 5 November 2019.
The closing date for applications may be revised, subject to funding availability.
Grant allocations will be awarded on an annual basis, minimum of €1,000 and maximum of €20,000 per year per applicant. On-going funding will not be available.
All funding must be expended by 31 December of the year funding is awarded. Funding that has not been fully spent by this date must be de-committed i.e. returned to the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
Selection and Assessment process
- Please submit your application form at least 6 weeks before the start of your project or activity. You may be requested to send additional documents or information to support your application.
- There is limited funding, therefore not all applications can be funded. Each application will be judged by a DCYA panel on its eligibility and the extent to which it achieves the stated goals of the scheme.
- If approved, an appropriate small grant contract will be agreed, after which the funding will be released. Applicants who have been successful must agree to the Terms and Conditions of the DCYA Contract.
- All Applicants will be notified in writing the decision of the panel. The Assessment Panel’s decision is final.
- All funding provided must be expended by end December 2019. Any unspent funds at the end of the calendar year must be returned to DCYA.
- Only one application per year by organisation/network/fora.
- The number of awards will be dependent upon the quality of applicants at the time of application. All awards are based on funding availability.
The following core criteria will apply:
- Applicants must demonstrate the use of data, evidence and intra- and inter-disciplinary sharing of innovative practice & emerging thinking from research;
- Applicants must focus on prevention and early intervention
- Applicants must have a built in assessment or evaluation of impact
- Applicants must demonstrate the existence or potential of a strong self-sustaining network, learning community or forum
- Applicants must be based in the Republic of Ireland and make its impact in the Republic of Ireland.
Monitoring and verification
Financial and activity monitoring and verification information and documents will be required on project completion, including:
- The grantee should provide access to relevant records including expenditure profiles, cash profiles, regular management accounts and annual audited accounts. These reports should be accompanied by a certificate of assurance signed at management level, (in general by two responsible persons for example at management or board level), certifying that the public money granted was used in accordance with the terms and conditions of the grant.
- A financial and a narrative report on the project within six weeks following completion of the proposed activities.
- An article and/or case stories from participants or beneficiaries of the project as appropriate, along with photos.
- Grantees must comply with the Statement of Principles for Grantees of Circular 13/2014, Management of and Accountability for Grants from Exchequer Funds.
- You may be contacted to provide updates on the project to DCYA throughout the year. You are required to provide a swift response to these requests and agree that this information can be used for reporting and promotional purposes.
- All resources, tools and publications developed as a result of the funding must be made freely available on the QCBI website.
- We expect that participants benefitting from the fund will be willing to attend relevant learning events.
- Any public statement concerning the project should include a statement that the project is supported by DCYA as part of the QCBI, funded by the Dormant Accounts fund and where possible, any promotional material should incorporate the DCYA and QCBI logo and branding.
The 2019 QCBI Network Support Grants Scheme is open for applications until 5 November 2019.
The closing date for applications during 2019 may be revised, subject to funding availability.
Grant allocations will be awarded on an annual basis, minimum of €1,000 and maximum of €20,000 per year per applicant.
Please make sure that your application:
- is completed in full and dated;
- is signed by the person authorised to enter into legally binding commitments on behalf of the applicant;
- and meets the core criteria set out in the Guidance document.
All grants must be expended by 31 December of the year funding was awarded. Grants that have not been fully spent by this date will be de-committed i.e. returned to the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.