Why become a PAL?

Through being a PAL, you will gain leadership skills by helping to mentor and encourage the personal development of young people, and contributing to their exciting and challenging transition from teenager to young adult.

You don’t have to be an award holder yourself. We are looking for those with interesting skills, hobbies, or amazing life-experiences who are energised by working with young people. If this sounds like you, then we would love to hear from you.

becoming a pal stat

The role of a PAL

  1. Agree participants’ activities
  2. Help participants to register
  3. Guide and continually review participants
  4. Review and approve participants for the Award
More on the role of a PAL

How to become a PAL

To become a PAL you must be affiliated or work with an approved body (eg, School, Youth Service, Volunteer Centre) which is youth focused.  You are first required to submit an application form. Gaisce will then coordinate your Garda-vetting and perform a reference check. You must then book into a one day training workshop. Once you have completed this process you can begin working with participants!

  1. Submit an online PAL application form from our PAL Toolkit.
  2. Book into a Gaisce training workshop. You will be sent a link to a booking page once you have submitted your PAL application form. These are run regularly around the country between September and May. You can see current dates and venues for training here. 
  3. Once your vetting, reference checking, and training has completed we will confirm to you that you can begin taking on Award Participants.

becoming a pal stat2-02

Screening & Training

The purpose of screening all new PALs is to:

  • Verify the details provided by PAL applicant with known referees;
  • Identify, as far as is practically possible, if there is any factor that would indicate that the applicant is not suited to working with young people in the age groups 14-25 as required under law.
  • 1. Reference Checking
    PAL applicants should provide the contact detail of two referees during the application process. Gaisce will contact both by phone to confirm that they have been nominated as a referee and will send a form to complete and return. Applicants should make sure to let referees know they have been nominated so that they can expect to hear from Gaisce when we contact them.
  • 2. Garda Vetting
    The National Vetting Bureau Act 2012 is part of a suite of complementary legislative proposals to strengthen child protection.The legislation was enacted in December 2012 with the purpose of providing a legislative basis for the vetting of persons who seek or are in positions of employment relating to children or vulnerable persons. Previously, persons applying for such positions were vetted on a non-statutory basis. This Act makes vetting mandatory. Gaisce in accordance with the Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 1999 and 2011 has been Garda Vetting PALs since 2007. You can find the our Garda Vetting form on the PAL resources page. Simply fill in your information and post forms back to Gaisce’s – The President’s Award, Ratra House, North Road, Phoenix Park, Dublin 8.
  • 3. PAL Training
    Gaisce provides in-service training workshops for all our PALs to help them manage the Award effectively and provide leadership for their participants. Training must be completed before taking on participants. Check out our upcoming training dates and reserve your place here.