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15 to 20 April – East Clare Golf Village

 Youth work trainers from across Europe and beyond, from twenty two different countries, arrived in East Clare to make the next step in their journey towards increased international cooperation.

The group originally met in Ireland in 2014 with the intention of establishing a guild (association) to represent their interests, improve quality and provide development opportunities. Now, two years on and after meetings in Budapest (Hungary) and Blackpool (UK) last year, they are about to launch a membership scheme inviting international colleagues to join them.

During the week the International Youth Work Trainer Guild (IYWT Guild) piloted a technique of reflection and development as part of their process to ensure quality. This process is called a 360 appraisal in which trainers assess their own practice, while simultaneously being assessed by colleagues, participants and employers, all with the aim of identifying areas for development and honing their skills.

Also during their time here the Guild continued to work on the launch of their membership package, setting priorities for the next twelve months and looking at ways in which they can advocate for the trainer profession at a national and international level.

13040988_10154783164247501_9019279538791178219_oThe meeting was funded under by the EU’s Erasmus+ Programme through Léargas, the Irish National Agency, and was hosted by FishBowl Youth.

FishBowl Youth was founded in 2002 and works locally, nationally and has an established reputation for it’s international work.

Jonathan Bowyer, facilitator of the seminar, said: “The work that the International Youth Work Trainers (IYWT) Guild has been doing over the past two years is vital to ensure that the voices of trainers are heard at an international level and that professional standards are collectively developed to ensure quality.”

“The process that we went through during the week is one that will help the trainers to think about their own competences and identify areas of development for themselves with the help of their peers.”

Mieke McMahon, member of the IYWT steering group and of FishBowl Youth, added: “We were really pleased to be hosting he IYWT Guild team in Ireland once again for the next stage of the journey to form the Guild. The group have taken a needs-led approach and have themselves identified the priorities for their profession and, more importantly, how the Guild can be a way to achieve what is needed.”

“Not only was this meeting another milestone in the journey of the Guild, but it is fantastic that it happend here in East Clare and something that as a country we should be proud to be hosting.”

For more information about the International Youth Work Trainers guild visit:

For more information about facilitator Jonathan Bowyer visit


  1. About International Youth Work Trainers (IYWT)
    The International Youth Work Trainers guild is an independent supportive community of trainers in the youth work sector that advocates on behalf of and contributes to each other’s professional development. Members aim to ensure defined quality standards in delivery of training activities. The guild endeavours to have a positive impact on Youth Policy and non-formal education as part of life-long learning at all levels within Europe and neighbouring regions. It will do this by communicating recommendations to decision makers and advocating on behalf of its members.
  2. The full list of participant countries is:
    Albania, Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Bulgaria, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Montenegro, Netherlands, Northern Ireland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Turkey, Ukraine and United Kingdom.

3. Day by day report

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