Young People from Bradóg Regional Youth Service in Dublin join Vhi and Irish Youth Foundation to launch ‘Vhi Health & Wellbeing Fund’

by Gazette Reporter
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Vhi were joined by young people from Bradóg Regional Youth Service in Dublin to launch the third consecutive year of the Vhi Health & Wellbeing Fund.

Established in 2020 in partnership with the Irish Youth Foundation (IYF), the Fund is dedicated to supporting young people’s health and wellbeing and today invited non-profit organisations based in Dublin to apply.

The Vhi Health & Wellbeing Fund aims to support projects that are seeking to strengthen resilience in young people and help them manage anxiety. In the last two years, 22 youth focused organisations across the country have been awarded grants for projects focused on strengthening resilience and helping young people manage anxiety. To date, over 4,000 young people have been directly impacted through the Fund, with just under 200,000 young people indirectly benefitting from the initiative.

In addition to making funding available, Vhi are introducing a pilot programme for youth leaders focusing on trauma informed care and worker wellbeing. This programme is being specifically developed by Vhi health experts to support youth leaders in their work with young people.

Speaking at the launch, Brian Walsh, CEO, Vhi Group said: “At Vhi, our purpose is to help our customers live longer, stronger, healthier lives but we also want to help our local communities too. That’s why we’re delighted to launch the third consecutive year of the Vhi Health and Wellbeing Fund right in the heart of Dublin at Bradóg Regional Youth Service. The impact of the Fund to date has been truly inspiring with every young person supported by the Fund over the last two years gaining the opportunity to better understand how to manage their own health and wellbeing while also developing skills to help them navigate feelings of anxiety when they face them. I’d encourage all eligible organisations to apply for the fund.

Pictured at the launch of the Vhi Health and Wellbeing Fund were young people from Bradóg Regional Youth Services in Dublin.

He continued “In view of the evolving needs of the community and voluntary sector, we are broadening the scope of the Vhi Health & Wellbeing Fund this year and introducing a pilot programme for youth leaders specifically. We want to provide them with access to trauma-based training so that they can be better equipped to support the young people they’re working with and help them manage the challenging situations they can be faced with.”

The emphasis this year continues to be on supporting programmes focused on early intervention and prevention for young people. It is open to applications from non-profit and charitable organisations who work directly with young people or with adults who surround them. Grants of €5K and €10K will be available through the Fund.

Last year Bradóg Regional Youth Service, received €10,000 in funding to roll out and extend its VIBES programme, a mental health initiative to help young people from disadvantaged areas to connect and contribute. Following the pandemic, a lot of Bradóg service users felt disconnected from their peers and their communities. The VIBES programme has since helped them reconnect with others and surround them with a system of support to fuel their personal growth.  

Speaking about the impact of the programme, Maria O’Donooghue, Youth Leader at Bradóg Regional Youth Service said: “We were delighted to receive the funding last year from Vhi. With the funding we were able to extend the reach of our VIBES programme, a mental health initiative deigned to support young people, to a wider group of young people with our area. It’s been really rewarding to see how well the young people have responded to the focus on enhancing their mental health through the development of skills that are now enabling them to manage their anxiety and challenges they face day to day in a controlled way. We’ve been delighted with how the programme has been received by the young people and their families and hope we can continue to grow our focus and support for young people in this area. I would encourage anyone working with young people in Dublin with an idea to apply.”

The Vhi Health & Wellbeing Fund, run by Vhi in partnership with the Irish Youth Foundation, is open to not-for-project or charitable organisations that are seeking to deliver projects dedicated to supporting the resilience of young people aged 12-25 years old in the six locations where Vhi have operations – Cork, Dublin, Donegal, Galway, Kilkenny and Limerick.

For more information, or to make an application, visit

PHOTO – Fennell Photography

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