Minister O’Brien announces funding to strengthen the development and growth of community work

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Joe O’Brien TD, Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development and Charities, today (Wednesday, 9 December 2020) announced funding of €254,000 to support the work of the All Ireland Endorsement Body for Community Work Education and Training (AIEB) between 2020 and 2022.

The funding will support the future growth and development of community work in Ireland. It will do this by promoting the highest standards of community work education and training at all levels in the context of the agreed all-Ireland standards.

The AIEB was established in 2010 as an all-Ireland body for supporting and promoting community development. It also ensures quality and standards in community development practice.

The AIEB is hosted and supported by Community Work Ireland, the national community development organisation, and is independent and autonomous of education providers and institutions.

Minister O’Brien said:

“I am happy to announce funding of €254,000 to AIEB, an all-Ireland body supporting the quality education of community development workers. I would like to see grassroots community work in Ireland growing, I think the AIEB can play a key role in this regard and I hope this funding helps.”

Anastasia Crickley Chairperson of AIEB added:

“This funding will go a long way towards ensuring that the important work being undertaken in the most marginalised communities is based on core values of social justice, equality, human rights and sustainable development. We are committed to ensuring that education and support for community workers and others who serve communities meets these standards and encompasses these values and that the challenges facing communities now and into the future can be met in ways that are inclusive, participative and impactful.”

The funding provided will seek to support a number of proposed actions including a review and mapping of community development programmes and their qualifications. It will also support a needs assessment of practicing community workers and others working with marginalised groups.

In addition, the funding will assist with communication and networking activities of the AIEB including interaction with similar endorsement bodies in Ireland and internationally.

All of the activities, to be supported, seek to ensure appropriate training and further education opportunities for those involved in community work in Ireland. They are linked with commitments in ‘Sustainable, Inclusive and Empowered Communities’ the five year strategy to support the community and voluntary sector in Ireland, published in August 2019.

The Minister added:

“It is important that people who see a career path in community work are confident that the courses they are taking are robust and fit for purpose and this funding will support AIEB to ensure this.”

Anastasia Crickley Chairperson of AIEB added;

“AIEB is very appreciative of the Minister’s and the Department of Rural and Community Development’s support for the important work that the Body does in ensuring the highest standards in community work throughout the island of Ireland.”


The Department of Rural and Community Development Press Office

076-1006843 / 087-1734633




The All Ireland Endorsement Body for Community Work Education and Training (AIEB) was established in 2010 as an all-Ireland body for supporting and promoting community development and ensuring quality and standards in practice through the:

    • development and maintenance of standards relevant for practitioners, and for programmes and policymakers when considering community work dimensions.
    • development and delivery of endorsement frameworks, procedures and processes for community work education.
    • development of standards and support for education and training at all levels.
    • development and maintenance of appropriate links and exchanges with national and international quality assurance and educational bodies.


In 2016, the AIEB, supported and facilitated by Community Work Ireland, undertook a wide scale consultative process resulting in the publication of The All Ireland Standards for Community Work. The Standards provide the foundation and guiding framework for community development in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The aim is to provide a reference point and guide for key stakeholders seeking to support community work for the promotion of social inclusion, social justice and equality and as an intervention for social change. Such stakeholders include communities, community workers, programme implementers, employers, policy makers, funders, organisations, groups and community work educators. The AIEB reflects established best practice for professional bodies concerned with quality assurance and education and grading for that quality.

AIEB seeks to promote standards for professional community work education and training. Reflecting established practice for professional bodies concerned with quality assurance and education and grading for that quality.

AIEB membership comprises people from across the stakeholders and associated sectors, including practitioners, educators, funders/policy makers, employers and students. All serve in a voluntary capacity. Reflecting the mobility of workers and the aspiration of partnership and co-operation, AIEB is an all island North /South body which presents many opportunities bringing together educators and practitioners from a variety of contexts with a broad range of diverse experience and expertise.

Further information can be found on the AIEB website at www.aieb.ie

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