Educate Together awarded Education Innovation Fund grant for groundbreaking Nurture Schools project

Educate Together is today delighted to announce that it has been awarded a significant  grant and a place on the prestigious Changemaker Programme of Rethink Ireland (previously Social Innovation Fund Ireland). Rethink Ireland is an organisation that supports social innovations and not-for-profit organisations driving transformative change in Ireland.   

The award recognises Educate Together’s continued commitment to supporting children and young people who are at risk of social exclusion and educational disadvantage. The grant is awarded to Educate Together under Rethink’s Education Innovation Fund 2020-2023, which supports organisations tackling educational disadvantage and promoting equity in education.   

Educate Together launched the Nurture Schools project in 2020 with support from technology company Salesforce. The project aims to support students with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties in primary and second-level schools to get them back on track and engaged with their education.    

This is achieved through innovative and inclusive interventions that are teacher-led and evidence-based, complemented by an overall whole-school Nurture approach. School staff are supported to develop knowledge and skills so that their practices are trauma-informed, nurturing and effective. The project is the first in Ireland to address in a structured way the adoption of a nurture approach across a network of schools, primary and second-level. 

Educate Together’s current two-year project aims to reach 2,250 children across 35 schools. The Rethink Ireland grant awarded today will allow Educate Together to deepen and extend the Nurture project:  

  • extending the project to include more schools, bringing the number of schools in the project to 35; 
  • providing vital language supports to schools so that minority language children and young people can be fully included; 
  • developing high quality continuing professional development (CPD) in Anti-bias and Culturally Responsive approaches for (600+) teachers and ANAs (SNAs). 
  • continuing the project for a third year, reaching more students and embedding the Nurture approach in school cultures; 
  • enabling 1,000+ more students at risk of educational disadvantage to be supported; 
  • extending Nurture and Trauma-informed Practice CPD to more teachers. 

Emer Nowlan, CEO of Educate Together, commented on the Rethink Ireland’s grant: 

“We are grateful to Rethink Ireland for supporting Educate Together in our ongoing work to address educational disadvantage and ensure every student can reach their full potential. This investment will ensure our Nurture project reaches those who need it most and has a lasting impact in schools across Ireland. It will directly benefit the students who have been most affected by school closures; building positive relationships and developing social and emotional skills so that they can successfully re-engage with their learning.”   

For more information on Educate Together’s Nurture project, go to: