MARDI – our partner

MARDI (Making A Real Difference Ireland)

MARDI is an voluntary group, based in Bundoran, Co Donegal , with eight members on their working group, and sixteen youth members.  MARDI works with marginalised groups locally and regionally and is a partner with Good Energies Alliance Ireland in our EVS and Youth Democracy projects. Its activities include:

• Projects,
• Programmes,
• Language support,
• Arts and music training

It uses youth activities, festivals, youth volunteering opportunities, and intercultural events as a way of delivering non-formal training and networking possibilities between diverse groups.

MARDI has worked closely with organisations, both Statutory and Voluntary, over the last six years, on projects that involve the positive integration of youth, local groups, and those marginalised within our society, such as asylum seekers and refugees, “new communities”, the elderly, and youth at risk of engaging in anti-social behaviour.

Main aims and objectives

• To advance the profile of marginalized groups of people within our society, so that those groups may take a constructive place in our communities;

• To promote the ethos of interculturalism, and anti racism, and to provide a platform to give a voice to those who hold a weak position within our society.

Subsidiary objectives

• To develop a strong force of volunteers who will bring different skills and talents to the group;
• To provide training and assistance to those volunteers, so that they can work to their full capabilities;
• To enrich and enhance the lives of those marginalized within our society and to provide a link for those without a voice, to have their opinions listened to and respected;
• To facilitate intercultural events and workshops, using variable mediums including all aspects of the Arts;
• To actively promote the integration of refugees and asylum seekers within our society, by breaking down the myths and misconceptions which are commonly held by the community, and promoting tolerance of diversity, religion, culture and ethnicity;
• To establish and strengthen links with youth groups across Europe, and beyond, in order to use non formal education as a tool with which youth can fight racism, stereotyping, xenophobia, and racial and religious intolerance.


For young people with fewer opportunities, volunteering is in itself a rewarding experience, and often acts as a catalyst for change in their lives.

MARDI is an accredited sending organisation with EVS and has previously sent two young volunteers to EVS placements, one in Germany (February 2009 – August 2009) and one to Macedonia, (February 2010 to November 2010) and their life changing experiences through their EVS placements have motivated MARDI to send more young people as volunteers. At present, Mardi has sent three young people on EVS to Greece, another young person to Denmark, working on an environmental rights projects, and this year we are sending a young person to the Czech Republic.

MARDI also is an accredited hosting organisation. Last year it hosted Anais Gerbaud, a young French girl who stayed in Ireland for six months and worked mainly on the campaign to prevent Fracking in Ireland. MARDI works closely with GEAI and provides a Mentor (someone who makes sure the volunteer’s personal needs are met) for GEAI’s current volunteer from Ukraine.

Are you interested?

Here is more information:


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