The Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning, PEIL for short, was the only ESF programme in Ireland for the 2014 to 2020 period. It was formally approved by the European Commission in February 2015 and was launched in April of that year. The Programme involved a total investment of €1.126 billion; over €484 million each from the ESF and the Government of Ireland, a special allocation of just over €68 million from the EU’s Youth Employment Initiative, and €88.3 million from REACT-EU.
In line with the investment priorities set out in the ESF Regulation, the key areas chosen for investment in Ireland for 2014-2020 revolved around activation of the unemployed, social and labour market inclusion, education and youth employment.
The PEIL contained five Priority Axes, including Technical Assistance, which funded the operations, administration and communication of the programme. The Priority Axes were as follows:
To view the activities supported under the PEIL please click here.
Youth Employment Initiative
The Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) was created to tackle the high levels of youth unemployment and implement the Youth Guarantee by providing job, education and training opportunities to young people aged 15-24.
Funding was provided to EU Member States where youth unemployment was higher than 25% in 2012. In Ireland, unemployment figures for the under 25’s had reached a high of 31.9% in 2012, meeting the threshold for YEI funding.
The YEI in Ireland was delivered using ESF support. The Youth Employment target group is young people under the age of 25 not in employment, education, or training. In order to focus the ESF and YEI funding directly, a separate Priority Axis (Priority 4) was established in the PEIL 2014-2020. The ESF supported under 25’s in the following YEI activities: Back to Work Enterprise Allowance (BTWEA) Scheme, JobPlus, Youthreach, Defence Forces Employment Support Scheme, Community Training Centres, and the Youth Employment Support Scheme.
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