What is the Equity in Education Fund?
The “Equity in Education Fund” aims to support not-for-profit organisations working to enhance access to education for young people experiencing educational disadvantage based on their cultural identity or geographical location. Many students from vulnerable, minority communities and students living in poverty face a greater degree of educational disadvantage when compared to young people in the general population. Students who leave school early are much less likely to find well-paying jobs, and are at more risk of poverty as access to education is heavily linked to socioeconomic status.
Our evaluation with the National University of Ireland, Galway shows that standard formal education does not work for all young people, so it is important that we look for creative solutions that offer equal opportunities to education while understanding the many factors needed for young people to succeed.
Recognising the critical role education plays in the social and economic lives of young people in Ireland, this Fund will support not-for-profit organisations focused on enhancing educational engagement and improving formal and non-formal educational outcomes for young people from Traveller, Roma and Migrant/Refugee backgrounds as well as those experiencing rural disadvantage.
Specifically, this Fund will support projects that offer innovative solutions to socio-economic disadvantages that impact education. The fund will:
This is a three-year €1,250,000 fund created by Rethink Ireland in partnership with a private donor and the Department of Rural and Community Development via the Dormant Accounts Fund.
The Equity in Education Fund will provide a package of awards and support to innovative not-for-profit organisations that are enhancing educational engagement and improving formal and non-formal educational outcomes for young people from Traveller, Roma and Migrant/Refugee backgrounds, as well as those experiencing rural disadvantage. Specifically, this Fund will support projects that offer innovative solutions to socio-economic disadvantage that inhibits young people from engaging fully in education. The fund will:
There will be 4-5 awards available in total, and each Awardee will receive a cash grant (to a maximum of €67,500 and a minimum of €50,000 per annum, for 3 years), mentoring support and placement on Rethink Ireland’s three-year capacity building programme.
The Fund seeks applications from not-for-profit organisations that work with young people from Traveller, Roma and Migrant/Refugee backgrounds as well as those experiencing rural disadvantage.
Eligibility and Criteria
Projects must meet both Rethink Ireland’s criteria and the specific criteria for the Fund, as set out below:
Rethink Ireland Core Criteria
There are two sets of core criteria: project criteria and applicant criteria
The project must:
Applicants must come from an entity that has a ‘not for profit’ legal form, for example:
Additionally, the project should meet one or more of the criteria below:
Advantageous criteria for projects working with Traveller and Roma Target Group
Advantageous criteria for projects working with Migrant/Refugee Target Group
Advantageous criteria for projects working with Rural Communities Target Group
Which projects won’t qualify?
Projects that are not eligible to apply are:
Which applicants cannot apply?
Applicants that are not eligible to apply are:
This three-year Fund will provide a range of supports to community and voluntary sector organisations through cash grants and non-financial support.
Applications to the Equity in Education Fund have now closed.
Shortlisted applicants will be contacted during the week beginning 25th April 2022, and invited to interview.
Interviews will take place between Tuesday 3rd – Friday 13th May 2022.
What can cash grants be spent on?
You may only spend the grant on the project which won the award. Rethink Ireland will agree on the specific use of the grant with you.
Please note: you cannot use the grant to pay off debts or buy land, buildings or equipment and it cannot be used for subsistence or scholarship payments to beneficiaries.
If my organisation has already or is currently getting a grant from Rethink Ireland, can I still apply?
Yes. If you have previously been funded or are currently being funded by Rethink Ireland, you can still apply to The Equity in Education Fund with a new project.
Who will decide who wins the awards?
Final decisions are made by the Board of Rethink Ireland.
What is the selection process?
The selection process includes the following stages:
Stage 1: Open call for applications (Feb 17th 2022 – Apr 7th 2022)
Stage 2: Review of applications
Stage 3: Shortlisted applicants invited to interview – week beginning 25th April 2022
Stage 4: Interviews (Tuesday 3rd – Friday 13th May 2022)
Stage 5: Final checks on short-listed applicants
Stage 6: Final decision by Rethink Ireland’s Board – June 2022
Stage 7: Inform successful applicants – June 2022
Can organisations make multiple applications?
Yes, organisations can make multiple applications. These applications must be for different projects.
If my organisation is funded by a Government/state agency (HSE, TULSA, and so on) are we eligible?
Yes, you can apply if you are in receipt of funding from a government or state agency. However, if your organisation is 100% funded through state sources then you are not eligible to apply.
What are the social determinants of education?
Social determinants of education are conditions in the lives of people and where they live that affect their ability to be able to engage in education. Examples of social determinants of education include:
What are examples of Youth Leadership?
Youth leadership programmes work to enable young people to develop skills and qualities that will help them to become role models and leaders among their peers and in their communities. Youth leadership skills include:
Here is an example of a Youth Leadership programme developed by GoodPush.
What are examples of social capital?
Social Capital refers to the collective importance of relationships and networks between people and organisations to pursue shared objectives, and how these networks can help support communities and groups of people. Examples of social capital are any benefit that is derived from interaction between members of a social grouping or society.
What is Rural Disadvantage?
There are additional barriers and issues in rural areas, particularly around access to services and resources. Rural deprivation factors are often considered ‘hidden needs’ because they are not concentrated enough to attract attention and resourcing. Rural disadvantage is described according to (a) well-being (general indices, income, prices, poverty, unemployment, health and education), and (b) service deprivation (income security, health, education, welfare and essential services).
Any further questions?
Rethink Ireland will be hosting a number of application sessions online on March 3rd and March 16th to answer any questions that you have.
Contact the Equity in Education Team at firstname.lastname@example.org
By applying for The Equity in Education Fund, you agree to the following terms and conditions: