DIT hosts major International Conference on Social Inclusion

09 September, 2004    This week saw the arrival in Dublin of 80 delegates from 19 regions across nine countries for a three-day conference on social inclusion.

Hosted jointly by DIT and the Galway Education Centre, the Conference sought to examine how links between business and education can best respond to the issue of social exclusion.

A major part of the conference explored how DIT, through its Community Links programme, addresses social exclusion and educational disadvantage in Ireland. Developed in 1997 by DIT, the Community Links programme has a number of initiatives designed to tackle social exclusion including: `Lifelong Educational Access Programme (LEAP); 'Dublin Inner-City Schools Computerisation Project' (D.I.S.C); 'The Digital Community Project'; 'Pathways through Education' and the 'St. Joseph's Wind band Project' in Ballymun.

As well as reviewing the models and approaches adopted by DIT in their programmes, the Conference demonstrated how Irish Business cooperates and supports such programmes. The conference concluded in Dublin with a visit to St. Joseph's Primary School in Ballymun, where conference delegates were given the opportunity to witness firsthand DIT's Wind Band project in action.

For the final part of the Conference, delegates relocated to Galway where representatives from the Galway Education Centre addressed the issue of social inclusion, and the links between business and education from a rural context.

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