Youth Advocacy Service

GRETB County Galway Advocacy Service

The GRETB’s County Galway Youth Advocacy Service operates in both North and East County Galway and in South County Galway. It is a community based service whose goal is to provide career path planning and support to young people between the ages of 16 – 21 years old who are at risk of leaving school or who have already fallen out of mainstream education with little or no qualifications. There are two Advocates based in County Galway, Conor Griffin (based in Tuam), who covers North and East County Galway, and Bartley Joyce (based in Gort), who covers the South County Galway.

Following a client referral, a one-to-one meeting is arranged with the person where previous education, training or work experience is discussed. All realistic options open to the client are explored along with potential barriers to progression. A tailored made career path plan is then put in place along with clear and attainable short term goals, with a view to motivating and progressing the young person to further education, training, or employment.

The Advocacy Service works with clients who are referred from a number of organisations. These clients, more often than not present with stumbling blocks or issues that prevents them from reengaging with education or progressing onwards. Using one-to-one meetings, the Advocate tries to identify where the client’s strength and weaknesses lie and after this initial meeting, a career path plan, with specific goals is drawn up in order to provide both focus and motivation.

Running parallel to this approach, the Advocate must work through any barriers that might derail future progression. Examples of these barriers may include: literacy and numeracy weaknesses, family and social care problems, previously poor or negative educational experiences, drug or alcohol misuse and mental health issues. Linkages are made with the clients consent to engage with any supports where necessary. Constant and ongoing one to one support is the key to a positive result, while empowering the client to take on more responsibility when it comes to decision making.

Please find below contact details for the County Galway Advocacy Service:

North & East County Galway:
Conor Griffin,
conor.griffin@gretb.ie,
087 9885968

South County Galway:
Bartley Joyce,
bartley.joyce@gretb.ie,
087 9540954

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