Mizen to Malin Peloton – Your Impact

700 kms

In September 2021, 19 hardy souls cycled 700kms from the most southern tip of Ireland to the most northern point of the country. Each point marked by a famous lighthouse – symbolising beacons of hope.

Their aim?

To raise vital funds for Ireland’s most disadvantaged young people to ensure they are provided with a fair opportunity to succeed and lift themselves up and out of poverty.

In their efforts they raised an incredible €90,000.

To each of our amazing Mizen to Malin cyclists: THANK YOU! Your hard work will impact children all across Ireland.

The funds raised will fully support the below three projects (chosen by Darina Mulligan, the nominated representative from the group) which align closest with our incredible peloton.

Solas Project- Afterschool Programme, Dublin 8
25 young people supported

The Solas Project passionate about breaking the cycle of poverty and believe that education is the key to this for children.

This after-schools programme strives to be ‘a home away from home’, for children and serves 25 5-12 year olds daily. Each day includes sharing a hot meal, receiving homework support, and doing a fun activity together. The programme runs throughout school holidays to ensure children retain a structure during this time and involves engaging outings such as visits to the zoo, museums, the beach, as well as outdoor pursuits.

We are passionate about breaking the cycle of poverty and believe that education is the key to this for children. The Generation Pandemic Fund will help us to run our Afterschool Programme, providing a safe space, a hot meal, and confidence building activities.

St Michael’s Parish (Core), Inchicore Dublin

10 young people supported

Core works withing the St. Michael’s Estate and Tyrone Place flats complexes, Emmet Crescent and the housing estates of Bulfin, Myra Close, Emmet Road and Turvey Avenue as well as the Oblates area of Inchicore.

Many of you will be familiar with Thomas McCarthy and the Bike Project in Inchicore. This funding will allow Thomas to fully concentrate on employment skills/training for young people in the community for 12 months. The Youth Project has consistently observed that each year there is a specific cohort of young people who once they finish school at a Leaving Cert level, or complete school to a Junior Cert level, they struggle to make the transition over to/ and maintain paid employment, further training/apprenticeships.

It will allow Thomas to work on practicalities such as interviews/CV/ apprenticeships and also help young people look at the softer skills needed to gain and remain in employment. Thomas’s hands-on approach has already proven successful in securing apprenticeships for the young people he supports such as at Sprit Motor Group (see video).

Thomas will educate the young people on roles and responsibilities of an employee and employer, explain expectations re: time keeping, annual leave, absence, support the young person, and build their confidence in dealing with employers.

All leading to a more positive transition for the young person and better retention in training/employment.

We are delighted to receive this funding and are very grateful to the Mizen to Malin cyclists for their incredible support.

The funds will enable us to bridge the gaps to accessing and sustaining a young person’s first job or further training. We can’t wait to get started.

Liquid Therapy, Donegal

50 young people supported

Liquid Therapy is a Donegal based organisation which delivers youth focused surf therapy programmes to young people with additional needs. A disproportionate amount of young people with additional needs suffer mental health issues In addition, those same young people face additional barriers to accessing sport. Liquid Therapy exists to tackle this issue and its programmes have been proven to provide benefits in the areas of:

  • Increased physical activity
  • Social inclusion
  • Improved mental health
  • Improved coordination and mobility
  • Confidence building


This funding will allow Liquid Therapy to engage an additional 50 children in their ‘Peak Season Surf Programme’.

With this funding we will be able to reach an additional 50 young people with additional needs. These Surf Therapy sessions will not only positively support their mental and physical wellbeing but also provide a respite for their carers.

Thank you to our corporate supporters for their generosity and support.

The remaining funds raised by our Mizen to Malin cyclists will be spread across the full list of projects below.


Le Cheile FRC, Mallow North Cork

A Literacy Support programme for adults and young people who struggle with literacy difficulties on a daily basis for 100 children.

Literacy is crucial to a person’s ability to develop fully as an individual and to be able to participate fully in society. Yet, one in four young people in Ireland have literacy/educational needs. A lack of affordable literacy supports and services available within our community results in these young people experiencing development delays and struggling to reach their potential educationally, socially and emotionally. This funding will allow us to support 100 children to ensure they get the opportunities they deserve.

Masamba Samba School Social Economy Programme CLG, Dublin NEIC

Successfully running in in St. James’s Primary School, Basin Lane for the last 10 years. The funding will extend the workshops for St James’ CBS, the local secondary school. This will see the delivery of a series of drumming workshops, for students of the secondary school, to support their successful transition to the senior cycle of education. They will deliver the sessions between September and Christmas break, hosting 10-12 sessions in all. Forty students will take part.

We know that children identify collective music making with positive feelings, pride and teamwork. This funding means we’ll be able to provide our workshops to children who are at the point of transitioning into secondary school. In an area with high levels of early school leaving, giving those young people an extra positive connection to their education is especially important.

Bridgeways FRC, Longford

This innovative programme aims is focussed on encouraging school attendance for eight young people with poor attendance records while also providing them with their first work experience.

The young people will be employed in a local organisation for six hours per week for 12 months. This fund will pay the young people weekly for their work providing them with their first wages while attending school part time and availing of a part time job. The programme will work with local employers allowing the young people to gain a greater sense of belonging in their local area.

The pandemic had an adverse effect on the school attendance of many of the young people we support. This funding will allow us to support and encourage eight young people to continue their education as well as earn vital work experience and become more embedded in their community.

St Agnes’ Community Centre for Music and the Arts, Crumlin

The St. Agnes’ Violin and Orchestra Project will help 400 young people from the Crumlin area to learn a musical instrument. Classes and instruments are provided free of charge.

This funding will aid the musicianship skills of 400 children. But it is also so much more than that. Equally as important are its effects on mental wellbeing, the development of their ‘cultural capital’ the improvements in their maths ability, and increases in their reading and comprehension skills. We’re very grateful to receive this funding.

Carrigaline Family Support Centre, Cork

Providing one to one therapy (including Play Therapy, and Art Therapy) for 42 children.

In the current climate of extensive public waiting lists this funding is vital. It will allow us to deliver therapy to 42 young people providing each young person with a safe space to explore, be it through words or Art and Play, their underlying concerns and issues to help bring them to a place of understanding and management.

Letterkenny Youth & Family Service (LYFS)

‘It’s My Chance’ is a 12 week programme that will improve positive mental health and physical health and wellbeing of 16 young men currently excluded from society.

This funding will have a deep positive impact on the mental and physical and wellbeing of the group of at risk young men we currently work with.

Irish Refugee Council, National

‘Project ‘Connections’, is a 10 week creative arts programme with an emphasis on wellbeing for 30 young people aged 16-25 with refugee status. In particular, for those who are unaccompanied and without family members here in Ireland. 30 young people will take part.

This funding will help bridge the large gap in wellbeing supports for young people aged who are seeking international protection in Ireland and those with refugee status. It will provide them with increased confidence and a well needed platform for them to express themselves.

CKU Centre for Counselling and Therapy, Dublin

CKU Centre is based in Tallaght. The funding will cover facilitators costs to run support groups and workshops for immigrants from new communities. The workshops will provide basic knowledge and support to learn core life skills, such as resilience, social skills and self-esteem, which ensure positive mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. 300 young people will avail of these workshops.

Our centre specifically supports young people from new communities in our area. They are particularly at risk of social exclusion. There is a gap in mainstream services for this cohort and this funding puts us in a position to meet this need.

Beacon of Light Counselling Centre, Dublin

The ‘Breakthrough’ programme is a 10–week programme which combines sport and one-to-one psychotherapy for 10 young men between 16-25 in West Tallaght at risk of suicide. The programme serves to act as an intervention, but it is also preventive as it encourages young men to take responsibility for their own physical and mental health. Additionally, participants have the opportunity to become mentors on the programme after completing it. Ten young people will take part.

This funding will specifically allow us to reach young socio-economically disadvantaged males, who are at risk of significant depression and suicide. It will help to destigmatize asking for help that men sometimes experience.

Youth Work Ireland North Connaught, Sligo

This project will run a twilight football club on Friday evenings during the summer months when young people do not have other activities to engage in. The provision of activities on Friday nights has been requested by Gardai and community organisations to provide a positive social outlet at a time when anti-social behaviour is increasing.

This will be a drop-in football club aimed at 12-16 year olds which hopes to enable young people to improve their physical and mental wellbeing through physical activity. It aims to engage harder to reach young people, new communities, and direct provision centre residents who may find the costs to joining local clubs prohibitive. 30-40 young people.

Through our projects we redirect young people away from conflict through emotional and developmental support. This funding will allow us to provide a positive Friday night outlet for a hard to reach cohort of young people. Fostering better community relations, improving their mental and physical wellbeing, and providing them with an opportunity they would otherwise not have.

St John’s Special School, Waterford

A special school in Dungarvan, catering to a huge catchment area which covers East Cork and West Waterford. St John’s Special School caters for children with mild, moderate, severe and profound learning disabilities from ages 4 – 18. This funding will music therapy, sound therapy, yoga, sand art, drumming journeys and mindfulness for all age groups within the school for 74 young people in total.

The programme aims to assist students in building up their resilience and cope with their anxieties – especially those anxieties associated with the uncertainties of the past 2 years.

The pandemic meant that the young people we work with missed out on many key elements in preparing for the transition from school to the adult world and this disruption has caused huge anxiety to many of our students. These workshops will help them to deal with daily anxieties, learn how to quiet their busy minds and take time for mindfulness. Allowing them to transfer these skills to their adult lives when they transition from our school into the adult world.

Lakers Social & Recreational Club, Wicklow

Horse Power! will supply equine therapy for 45 young people with intellectual disabilities over a 10 week programme. The Equine trainers will support them to improve their physical wellbeing, balance, agility and motor skills through horse riding. It will also aid them in expressing feelings communicating and empower them to feel confident and in control – through learning to control these large beautiful animals through patience and understanding.

Many of our most vulnerable young members had to isolate during lock down. This meant they were less social and less open than ever before. This funding, providing them with equine therapy will be vital in counteracting that and making a positive impact on their physical and mental wellbeing.

North Tipperary Development Company

This project will work with 12 young traveller women and young women living in direct provision in the Borrisokane community. The project aims to use the common interest and cultural importance of hair as a skills development project targeting these young women to work together, develop skills in hair dressing, support with communication, employability skills, CV & interview skills. Local hair salons will provide work experience with the hope that through active involvement within the industry that it may lead to meaningful employment.

Young Travellers and those from new communities often face challenges finding employment – due to stigmatisation and discrimination/lack of accredited skills. This funding will help increase confidence and employability for these young people while also creating a safe space for intercultural learning.

Just Ask Afterschool Club, Dublin 7

The School Retention programme for 25 young people in inner city Dublin aims to broaden their ideas about the opportunities that are available to them and which they are often unaware of. Ultimately its goal is to keep them engaged in their education and supporting their transition to the workplace where they can fulfil their true potential.

This funding will be vital in helping us to broaden young people’s understanding of what opportunities are available to them as they progress through their education.


Teen-Turn, National

Teen Turn is a nationwide charity that addresses the numbers of third level qualifications attained by women from disadvantaged and underrepresented communities in STEM subjects. This funding will provide a support service within their core offerings for those participants who are struggling in ways that require professional facilitation. The programme will impact 500 young people.

Through this funding we will be better placed to serve and support those young people who need additional help within our programmes. Ultimately helping to increase the numbers of third level qualifications, particularly those related to STEM, attained by girls from underserved communities.

Venture Out, Galway

This is an engaging, creative and experiential school-based programme for young second level aged boys, aiming to promote their health and wellbeing, while also addressing issues around what it is to be a man in today’s world.

It will be delivered within a community-based outdoor environment, involving simple outdoor-based activities (bushcraft skills such as fire lighting, whittling, hammock building and a range of nature sensory and mindfulness focused activities), along with a range of experiential personal development focused workshops and group discussions. The programme will be delivered in partnership with secondary schools and youth projects across the Galway and Connaught region. 500+ boys will take part.

As the roles and responsibilities of men continue to change and evolve now more than ever, young boys require positive role model guidance and support to navigate such change This funding will allow us to reach and support more young men during this time.

Belong To Youth Services, Nationwide

Belong To is launching Ireland’s first Quality Framework focused on creating LGBTQ+ Safe and Supportive Schools. It will take one to two years for a school to earn their LGBTQ+ Mark.

This national initiative moves things from individualised accommodations and supports to a whole education/whole school approach. It will impact 1200 young people.

Research has consistently found that LGBT lives are negotiated under varying degrees of adversity. This funding will assist in creating LGBTQ+ Safe and Supportive Schools where all students are free to be their authentic selves.

Sport Against Racism Ireland, National

Football for Employability will support and empower 30 young people from disadvantaged, ethnic minority, refugee or migrant backgrounds who engage with sports activities to consider the transition from second level education into further education or employment while also reaching out to those that have disengaged with education to transition back into education. Participants will take part in weekly football sessions in a safe space with focus on fitness and mental well-being.

Participants will have the opportunity for mock interviews, one on one CV writing sessions and PDP football coaching courses run by the FAI. The project will reach out to disadvantaged communities in Dublin and in particular the North East Inner City: the most socially and economically disadvantaged area in Ireland.

Funding for this programme will give participants the opportunity for physical activity, good health – mental and physical and well being, to meet people from different cultural backgrounds, to play football in safe spaces, to become Young Leaders in their community and to upskill with a view to third level education, further training and/or employment.

SCOOP Foundation, National

SCOOP’s mission is to empower displaced and marginalised young people to fulfil their potential in Ireland and abroad. The programme delivers pre-employment training and integration support services into employment for young people seeking asylum.

‘SCOOP Recruit’ is a training programme which will be  delivered to 135 young people seeking asylum that provides training and support along with guided pathways to employment & helps circumvent some of the key barriers faced by both beneficiaries and prospective employers. It has been carefully designed as a migrant-led and learner-centred approach along with community support connections to deliver an end-to-end supported candidate journey.

This funding will provide vital support services into employment for young people seeking asylum. This is especially important for the cohort of young people we work with as they face sustained employment gap adversely affecting their employment prospects and personal confidence.

Roscommon Young Carers Project

Being a young carer has an impact of every area of daily life, including accessing education. Young carers who do make it to school are often exhausted, challenged with their own mental health, struggling to keep up as homework is not always an option to complete in chaotic home environments and young carers report bullying at school as an issue.

This has a knock-on effect of making it more difficult for them to eventually enter the labour market. The aim of this project is to support and develop key skills and interests that a young carer can use to access an income stream in the future either as their main employment or to supplement carer benefits/college costs. This project is focussed on developing skills in key areas that makes a young carer employable, giving them skills that link to their interests whilst also being a good fit to the needs of the person they care for and creating flexibility. This will support 15-20 young carers.

This funding is vital to the young carers we support as they develop skills that they can use in everyday life as an opportunity to develop their own business/enterprise as an opportunity to be part of the labour market in a way that suits their needs and the needs of the person they care for.

Mevagh Family Resource Centre, Donegal

The Mevagh Family Resource Centre will offer workshops to prepare young people for employment opportunities in the hospitality sector in Donegal. This will include: Practical information on writing, editing and making a CV / application forms; strengths-based workshops to assist young people to see the skills, abilities and talents that they have at their disposal; mock interviews, using video analysis; securing seasonal employment; gaining transferable skills and experience to aide career progression; gaining networks of colleagues, friends and referees who will assist candidates on their career journey. The programme will impact 40 young people.

Through this funding we will be able to support the young people we work with in gaining transferable skills, building their confidence and self-worth, and strengthening their networks.

Innovate Communities, National

INSPIRE Mentoring supports marginalised young people aged 18-25 through educational transitions such as moving from education to employment.

The programme aims to address a significant system gap where our most marginalised young adults struggle to gain connections and insights into the professional world of work.

INSPIRE operates as a customised online mentoring programme using mentors that are relatable and motivating with direct relevant workplace experience. Skilled mentoring to support young people reach their full potential by matching them with a professional mentor, from a similar background. Their mentor can facilitate introductions and connections to their professional network, helping their mentee get critical industry insights.

The programme will be delivered to 215 young people.

This funding will empower the young people we work with to level the playing field in terms of entering the labour market – giving them the opportunities they deserve.

Children’s Rights Alliance Research, National

To ensure that the educational needs of children arriving to Ireland from Ukraine are best served in the Irish school system the IYF is funding the Children’s Rights Alliance wishes to commission research to form a policy response for Government on the educational needs of Ukrainian children.

This research will go some way to ensuring the children arriving into Ireland from Ukraine are being best served by the school system which will ultimately benefit those young people as well as their classmates.

If you would like to make an impact on the lives of Ireland’s most disadvantaged young people please consider making a donation to the Irish Youth Foundation or get in touch with us for more information.

How you can help

Our aim is to reach 45,000 children and young people who are living in disadvantaged circumstances across Ireland. 

To do this, we need to support a wide range of youth projects as well those incredible youth workers who work tirelessly, and often voluntarily, to ensure children and young people have a future to look forward to.

But we can’t do it without you.

Whether you are a business or an individual you can help.