Leixlip Youth and Community Centre

Serving the Community of Leixlip, Co Kildare

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History of LYCC

How It All Began

In April 1989 concerned parents from both sides of Leixlip came together to seek a way of getting a premises for the youth of Leixlip. Amongst those were Liam & Rita Murray, Jim Savage, Tom Neville, Gerry O’Neill, Tony & Rita Dunne, Kevin O’Connor, Dan Broderick, Liz Gartland. They quickly formed a committee with Frank Reid as its Chairperson. Rules & procedures were put in place to formalise the group’s activities and a solicitor was engaged.

Within a short period of time other interested groups such as Kildare Youth Services, Genesis Youth Club, Teen Machine Club, Foroige became involved. Local schools quickly leant their support. Various fundraising activities took place and the group established itself as the prime agency for the development of a centre for the youth of Leixlip

In 1991 a site at Galvin’s Cross was offered but this was unsuitable.

The group formally incorporated a company – Leixlip Youth Premises Group – on 6th July 1993. Charitable status was obtained soon after.

HP and Intel committed substantial sums to enable the group get to a higher level in their efforts to secure a suitable premises and this enabled the group to engage architects etc for the design and commissioning of the building.

In 2000 LYPG were offered the Newtown House site. As part of the overall campus development – a 3 way project involving the building of a garda station, library and community centre, the group obtained government grant of €1, 3 million to build a premises. Planning permission was obtained in July 2001. With a conservation order in place, Newtown House was restored and a new wing added for youth/community use. The sod-breaking ceremony took place in 2003.

Image: Hannigan Maguire Architects www.hhmarchitects.ie

In 2006 the building was completed. A lease was signed with Kildare Co Council in July 2006 and the official opening attended by European Commissioner, Charlie McCreevy (the minister who awarded the grant) took place on December 2007

Throughout the 21 years of the groups existence, members and directors (too numerous to list them all) have come and gone but it must be stressed that all of their talents have been required to get us to the position we are in today – having a purpose built centre for both the youth and general community of Leixlip.

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Where We Are Now

Leixlip now has a purpose built community centre built and opened to benefit the community of Leixlip. The Centre provides a youth room, community hall, kitchen facilities and rooms to rent to youth and community groups. Through its many activities run by groups in the area it fills a vital need as a community base for all ages from senior citizens coffee mornings to youth clubs for those aged between 10 & 18.

The Youth Room has kitchen facilities as well as table tennis, air hockey, pool, playstations, tv/dvd, music, numerous board games. Our movie & disco nights are very popular. The youth club holds various projects such as its summer one and are currently in the process of designing an outdoor walled garden space as well as revamping the Youth room with their own ideas to make it cool and funky. The Youth Clubs are run by Youth Leaders & Volunteers from the community.

The Centre also provides a premises for social & recreational activity for other groups such as karate, various dance groups, performing arts, yoga, mother & toddlers, and junior arch clubs to name but a few. Cultural evenings such as the celebration of Bastille Day enable us to integrate all demographics, making it everyone’s centre. This is to strengthen the equality and social inclusion of young people, marginalised and the elderly. We readily make available our facilities for other socially conscious organisations

Others that hire our rooms are football clubs, resident associations, and special interest groups including other youth clubs in the area. Leixlip Town Council, Kildare Youth Services,  Breaking Through & Kildare Leader Partnership all have administrative offices in The Community Centre.

We can also provide educational facilities such as adult education and Montessori teacher training. Conference facilities are available on request. We have been involved with local schools in assisting the transition year work place programme. We would like to expand this in the coming years.

The centre plays an active part in the community. This year we took part in the annual Leixlip Festival, with a children’s entertainer and face painting etc for 2 – 8 year olds.

Our role in the community was recognized in 2010 when we received a civic award for Social Achievement of the Year as voted for by the people in the community. This was for over 20 years work with and for the youth & community of Leixlip.

In February 2011, President Mary McAleese opened our Youth Cafe.  This is a dedicated cafe space featuring 6 PCs with full internet access. We also have a small kitchen area where snacks are provided.   All our youth projects are influenced and led by them. This is their space and we assist them in achieving their aims.

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What we do

Leixlip Youth and Community Centre provides a purposes built centre for the youth and community of Leixlip. The centre provides a youth room, community hall, kitchen facilities and rooms to rent to the youth and community.

Youth club

If you are attending 5th/6th Class or Secondary School and live in Leixlip, we have a club for you. Check out the Youth Club page

Community Centre

Here is a full list of what’s going on in your local community centre

LYCC on Facebook

By: Rashid Azar