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evaluation: tbuc cross-community youth sport programme

Under the NI Executive’s new Together Building A United Community (TBUC) Strategy, DCAL (now DfC) put together a pilot cross-community arts and sports programme for 160 kids and 40 leaders from Belfast. DCAL tried a very different approach with this large scale pilot, putting on 4 themes (football, dance, multi-sports and creative/digital).

There was so many new aspects to this project from both DCAL & community perspectives that a whole new evaluation methodology had to be created. This involved creation of unique surveys to assess prejudice/attitude levels among young people; observations; informal chats; regular meetings with DCAL, providers and community leaders & focus groups. McGarry Consulting put together a robust, fair and objective evaluation that highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of the programme.

McGarry Consulting routinely visited and observed the programme and spoke to leaders throughout. This ensured an in-depth and insightful first hand knowledge of the project. McGarry Consulting outlined a list of helpful recommendations, reflecting the varied feedback provided. 


An end of programme celebration event was held in Queen's University Belfast's Physical Education Centre. Kids were given red hoodies and performed skills and performances they'd practiced during the programme. Leaders, blue and black track suits, parents, DCAL staff and programme leaders were also in attendance.