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Caroline Kelly

The ALFA Project / Level 2

Awardee 2005

The ALFA Project / Level 2
Paddy McGowan & Kieran Crowe
Albert Byrne

The Alfa Project is a full time education initiative for 13-16 year olds who have dropped out of school.

The Challenge

Caroline studied Political Science and Economics for 2 years in Dublin. She is a founder member of the Golden Horde, which later became a notorious trash rock band. She moved to Belfast in 1988 where she became actively involved with Hollywood Rudolf Steiner School and then completed a 2 year part-time training in Early Childhood education Steiner based in Co. Clare.
Around this time Caroline felt very strongly that she wanted to start something new with teenagers, feeling they were not getting what they needed to help them in life. Caroline formed The Alfa Project in 2000 in Scarriff, Co. Clare.

In 2001 the Alfa Project opened with 14 teenagers aged 14-15 years for whom the traditional system was not working. A different approach to education was needed for these young people to re-engage them with education.

The Idea

The Alfa Project provides a real alternative to academic exam led education, combining the developmental base of Steiner Education with the need for young people to have a meaningful and experiential education. It takes an active learning approach to education.

The Impact

The Project has created a curriculum of experiential and innovative learning which covers three years for 13 – 16 year olds. A 4th year of education for 16 -17 year olds has been offered since 2009 to prepare them for third level, through the nationally recognised FETAC route to Higher Level. Alfa continues to provide high quality alternative education and has enrolled a number of students for the 2013/2014 academic year.

Caroline Kelly, Elevator Award, 2005

Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, Lower Ground Floor, 11/12 Warrington Place, Dublin 2
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