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Concluded Programmes

Conlcuded programmes previously run by or with Exchannge House Ireland

Learning On The Streets (LOTS)

Learning on the Streets (LOTS) was a pilot initiative designed to work creatively with a group of young Traveller boys from Labre Park in Ballyfermot who were at-risk of disengaging from mainstream education.

The Programme, which commenced in 2005, arose out of the work of the Labre Park After-School Programme, which as operated since 2000, under the management of Exchange House. The purpose of the work was to support the children, their families and their schools in mainstream education. The LOTS programme finished in March 2007.

Horsemen Project

The Horsemen Project was designed to meet the needs of Traveller, Gypsy and Roma young people in the area of vocational training. Traditionally, these communities have been associated with horses and feedback indicated that a training programme based on the care of horses would be a useful way of engaging with young people in the communities and provide them with skills relevant to the labour market in each of the participating member states, Ireland, Spain and Hungary.

The overall aim of the project was to develop a module for use as part of vocational training. Exchange House was asked to coordinate the consultation phase prior to module development, to assess the needs of young people and potential employers. The specific objectives included engagement with the Traveller (Ireland), Gypsy (Spain) and Roma (Hungary); to identify the skills present within the various communities in relation to horse care, to determine the level of interest in the care of horses among young people in the communities and to make recommendations for the development of a module for use with the target groups.

William McDonagh, Barney Power and Helen Campbell, visited Traveller and Roma communities in Holland, Hungary and Spain as part of the transnational work of Horsemen.

See the research results

Equal At Work – Community and Voluntary Sector Site

EQUAL at Work, developed through the Dublin Employment Pact (DEP), came to an end in 2004. Exchange House was the lead organisation in the community and voluntary sector.

Two pieces of research were carried out. The first aimed to identify existing human resources practices in relation to promoting equality and diversity through systems of recruitment and progression within the Community and Voluntary sector. It also identified barriers to the further development of good practice in these areas. The second looked at the impact of funding mechanisms and reporting arrangements on the human resource practices of Community and Voluntary organisations.

Both pieces of research were carried out with a view to documenting and collecting data around human resource issues impacting on equality and diversity in organisations in the sector. The ultimate aim was to raise awareness of these issues and to lobby for change both within the organisations themselves and within the government departments and agencies which fund them.

See the research results

Socrates Programme (EU)

Exchange House Ireland was delighted to be included in the Socrates Programme, Minerva-ODL and ICT “Alpha-Beta” and the Socrates Programme-GRUNDTVIG General European Co-operation Project, "Alpha–to–Omega", both projects were funded by the European Union under the Socrates programme. The programme ran from 2006 and concluded in September 2008.

Minerva – Alpha Beta

“Alpha-Beta” aimed to enable adult education providers to apply new methods of teaching for learners with literacy issues, using modern communication technology. These new resources were developed in consultation with adult learners to meet their needs.

Ireland (Exchange House Ireland National Travellers Service) was partnered with Germany, Austria, Greece, Italy and Romania. Exchange House developed modules on Fire Safety at work, Substance Misuse and Mobile Phone Technology.

GRUNDTVIG – General European Co-operation Project – “Alpha-to-Omega”

“New pathways towards volunteering and life long learning for ‘Senior’ European citizens”

The “Alpha-to-Omega” project targeted elderly citizens and senior migrants who are disadvantaged due to their social, ethnic or educational background and introduced disadvantaged senior European citizens to forms of life long learning through social participation. “Alpha-to-Omega” aimed to increase the acquisition of knowledge, proficiencies and competencies of adults through inter-generational dialogue. The methods embraced inter-generational task based learning.

Ireland (Exchange House Ireland National Travellers Service) was partnered with Germany, Austria, Belgium, Greece and Romania. Exchange House successfully piloted a ‘Living History’ module with older women from the Traveller community in an intergenerational learning project. Modules by the other partners include: Literature, Technology and Media (IEIE - Germany); Cultural heritage (Vivre ȁ Kokelberg – Belgium); Love and Partnership, Photography and Music (ANUP – Romania); Safe use of Medication and Safety at Home (Prolepsis – Greece); Volunteering (Akzente – Austria)

The projects gave Exchange House an opportunity to share expertise in an international arena. The modules have been translated into a number of other European languages.

visit the Socrates Programme internet portal

National Traveller Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS)

The predecessor of National Traveller Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS), Exchange House MABS, was initially established as a pilot project within Exchange House Traveller Services in 1998. This followed research which highlighted the difficulties Travellers had in accessing legal and affordable savings and credit in the Dublin region. However as it became evident that financial exclusion was more widespread, a decision was taken to create a national organisation to address the issue.

National Travellers MABS, a leading advocate for the financial inclusion of Travellers and other marginalised groups in Ireland, has been successfully providing support to Travellers, Traveller organisations and MABS both at local and national level since 2005. As the only government funded, minority specific service in the state, NTMABS does not deal with individual debt, but rather works to ensure equality of access to legal and affordable financial services through education and capacity building within the Traveller community, and by working for change in national and local policies and practices which exclude Travellers from fully participating in society.

See the research results

National Traveller Money Advice and Budgeting Service
Unit 2, North Park, North Road, Finglas, Dublin 11, Ireland

Telephone (+353-1) 864 8510
Fax (+353-1) 864 8511

Out of Homelessness - LifeSkills Project

Exchange House Ireland identified that there was an increasing number of homeless Travellers, some with addiction issues, accessing the service. The Out of Homlessness - Life Skills Project was set up to address the specific needs of this group of clients. The group meets on a weekly basis and is facilitated by a Social Worker and an Addiction Worker. The group engages in a variety of activites, including:

  • Adult basic education
  • Computers
  • Arts & crafts
  • Cookery
  • Parenting skills
  • Beauty therapy
  • Group outings


  • Empower Travellers affected by addiction and homelessness
  • Assist clients through various ways to address their addiction
  • Help clients get out of the cycle of homelessness
  • Help clients access accommodation and sustain it
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