Youth Participation Panel – YPP

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The Youth Participation Panel (YPP) is the first youth grant making programme to be established by The Community Foundation for Ireland and was officially launched on August 10th 2015. The YPP is made up of four young people, aged 16- 30 who are passionate about creating a better Ireland for our young people. Through an extensive research process undertaken by The Foundation certain trends were highlighted by Ireland’s youth and youth stakeholders as to what are the biggest issues for their group and what are the current barriers to overcoming these issues.

This research provided a guide to where best to place funding within the youth sector, with two areas in particular highlighted as of immediate importance; Youth Unemployment and Meaningful Youth Decision Making, through this the YPP was established to ensure the youth voice is incorporated into the process of youth grant making in The Community Foundation for Ireland.

The YPP will act as an expert grants panel, providing recommendations for grant criteria, grant impact reporting and the approval of youth funding grant applications.

YPP Members

Meet the YPP!

Patrick Sweeney  Patrick’s background lies firmly in the area of human rights and equality, having worked as Projects and Policy officer with GLEN- the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network. During his time with GLEN, Patrick focussed on foreign policy as well as LGBT healthcare strategies. Patrick also joined YesEquality; the Campaign for Civil Marriage Equality in Ireland, as Director of Logistics and Project Management. After the positive outcome of the Yes Campaign, Patrick then went on to work with Stonewall, the UK’s leading LGBT rights organisation. As Programmes Officer, Patrick led the development of Stonewall’s Diversity Champions programme in Scotland and the North East of England. Having played a part in what was a milestone in Ireland’s history, Patrick decided to return from the UK to take a position as Marketing and Development Specialist with Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, helping to improve Irish society for all. When he gets a chance Patrick likes to pursue languages and can often be found running or cycling through the streets of Dublin.


Valerie O’Brien  Valerie O’Brien is a Science Graduate of University College Dublin. Having benefited from youth programmes funded through philanthropic organisations, she now sits on the YPP to advise on grant making as a way of giving back. Valerie represented Ireland in the 2016 Clinton International Summer School for Economic Development where she received a scholarship to develop a social enterprise to empower women in STEM careers (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). Valerie is currently working in bio-medical engineering in Galway where she is volunteering through work to get young people engaged in STEM and outside of work with local youth charities.


Roisin Farragher  Roisin Farragher is a Doctoral Researcher and part time teacher, having a BA & most recently a MA in Community Development from NUIG. Roisin has extensive experience in community based activities and working with organisations such as Jigsaw Galway Youth Advisory panel, Children in Hospital Ireland (CHI), Galway City Partnership.


Nengi Anari Benstowe  Nengi is a graduate of Biomedical Science from Maynooth University. she is a writer. She is currently working on a book on youth and mental health. She is also a public speaker. She has spoken in several youth events mainly on mental health. She is currently undertaken her MBA in project management. In addition, Nengi has worked with successful organisation from Ireland, India and Lebanon. She participated in the youth conflict resolution in Lebanon which involved young people in Ireland and Lebanon.  She is currently volunteering as a facilitator with Young voices of Ireland. She loves singing, reading and she is driven to create positive change where ever she finds herself.


To download the grants flow infographic please click here.

To download the YPP best practice guide please click here.

To find out more about the YPP and youth grants for 2015/ 2016 please visit our website and keep a look out for the YPP update in the newsletter. Follow the #YPP on twitter @CommunityFound.