In October 2020, Ulster University (UU) was commissioned by the Irish Football Association (IFA) on behalf of the Department for Communities to conduct an evaluation of the Fresh Start Through Sport (FSTS) pilot programme across three phases.
The core research team consisted of Dr Brendan Coyle, Dr Conor Murray, Dr Gavin Breslin, and Dr Colm Walsh. The evaluation was assisted by public agencies, community organisations, the IFA and their sporting partners – Belfast Giants, Ulster Rugby, and the GAA. They provided advice on the direction of the evaluation and participated in in-depth semi-structured interviews. Young people that participated in the Fresh Start Through Sport programme also assisted the evaluation by sharing their experiences in focus groups
and semi-structured interviews.
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