Reaching out is very rewarding. It builds relationships, it makes my work real. It starts with a knock at the door … and it ends in the heart. It is full of passion.Patricia Sagasta, Family Support Worker, Exchange House
Exchange House National Travellers Service was established in 1980 at the petition of the Eastern Health Board with the aim of providing family support to the Traveller community in the greater Dublin area. Since then the organisation has developed and is now an organisation of Travellers and settled people working together to provide front line family support services, addiction services, youth work, educational services, community development and research & policy to Traveller men and women, Traveller families, and Traveller young people and children, many of whom are in crisis.
The Family Support Service is made up of a team of social workers, family support workers and addiction workers. The Family Support Service provides a range of services which include family support, social work and addiction outreach to members of the Traveller community.
The Education Service provides high quality education programmes which respect and build on existing strengths and skills of participants, providing opportunities for learning and progression. The service provides opportunities for youth and adults in basic literacy, further education/training and support in accessing third level education, training and employment.
The Youth Service is the main provider of youth service to the Traveller community in the greater Dublin area. Exchange House enables young Travellers to participate in youth work activities thus enhancing their personal and community development skills, enabling them to take greater control of their lives.
Exchange House identifies gaps in current provision and makes recommendations as to future interventions. Research activities inform service provision, reporting and advocacy, education and dissemination of information to providers and relevant agencies.
Exchange House National Traveller Service has expanded to provide a national service through training, provision of expertise and partnerships with other organisations providing services to Travellers in Ireland.
Research documents available here