Young Social Innovators (YSI) is a youth-led, team based, civic action programme for young people based on the four C’s; Communication, Co-operation, Care and Change.

It engages young people in social issues that concern them and supports them to come up with innovative actions and responses.

YSI believes that young people are a powerful and a largely untapped force for change in society.

The programme encourages, motivates and creates new opportunities for students to actively participate in the world around them and prepares them to fully take part in civic action whether through volunteerism, community service, service-learning, citizenship education, social entrepreneurship and innovation.

Some 6,000 young people take part each year throughout Ireland and develop social action projects and some up with new ideas to change the world for good.

The Donahies has been involved in YSI for a number of years and has been very successful in the school.

Our school was involved in launching the YSI speakout with TV3’s Elaine Crowley, the flag launch with the Taoiseach, two filming shoots as well as Newstalks Global Village radio interview with presenter Dil Wickremasinghe. We have had numerous successful teams that received various amounts of funding from the YSI Dragons Den.




The Donahies won the YSI Step up award in 2014, we were the only Dublin school to win a category that year. The winning team was involved in the project for two years in a row and their project was all about cyber bullying, they were called ‘Don’t Be Mean Behind The Screen’.

This year due to the success of YSI, the school was chosen to take part in YSI COSI, which is a Community of Social Innovators. This programme motivates, encourages and celebrates youth led social innovation.




The programme is led by student members of the YSI Advocate Team. YSI provides specialised training to Advocates through in-school workshops. The Advocate Team are then responsible for promoting the We Innovate theme among all of the staff and young people within their school.

Other teams that were involved in YSI were ‘The Numeracy Nutters’—they worked on promoting maths and making it fun. This team was highly commended in the final.

‘Take a Walk on the Blind Side’—this team made six tactile books, three books were donated to Donaghmede library and the other three are in Child Vision library in Drumcondra.

‘Team Smart Heart’—this team wanted to promote healthy eating and the importance of caring for your heart at a young age as well as promoting CPR. Students that have taken part in the programme have thoroughly enjoyed it and believe that YSI has given them numerous skills as well as boosting their confidence.