Ireland – Youth Cafés

Origins of the initiative (starting point)

A youth café is a safe, dedicated, quality meeting space for young people ranging in age from 10 to 25 years. It is determined by young people for young people, in partnership with adults in the locality.


To offer the following to young people:
  • a relaxed meeting space, which is safe, friendly, inclusive and tolerant;
  • a place for both sexes and for young people from all social and cultural backgrounds to engage in social interaction with their peers in a safe and supportive drug- and alcohol-free environment;
  • a location for relaxation, recreation and entertainment, and, where appropriate, as a site for information, advice or even direct care/service provision;
  • a place where young people can develop good quality relationships with their peers and with adults.

Target groups

Young people.

Subjects involved

  • Initiated by the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs
  • Partnership with adults in the locality
  • Young people are directly involved as creators of youth cafés

Concept of the youth café

Young people should be directly involved in a youth café at a number of different stages.
  • First, by talking to their peers, they should research whether or not a café is needed and if so, find out what its aims and objectives might be
  • Young people should become involved in the day-to-day running of the café
  • Young people should be actively involved in the physical design of the café itself
  • They should also become involved in the promotion and marketing of the café, by talking to their peers and encouraging them to get involved
Youth cafés are alternatives for spending free time, for offering support for young people in a non-stigmatizing way, for providing a forum for young people to explore talents, interact with peers and develop social skills. Youth cafés can connect resilience and civic engagement, for example, young people engaging with their communities.

For more Information

Link to the full version of the good practice

Best practice – Youth Cafés