The Tús Programme is a community work placement programme providing short-term working opportunities for unemployed people. The work opportunities are to benefit the community and are to be provided by community and voluntary organisations in both urban and rural areas. 100 community work placements have been allocated to Co Kilkenny. The Tús programme will be managed by Kilkenny LEADER Partnership for the Department of Social Protection, which has overall responsibility for the programme.

All the work carried out by participants in the Tús programme must benefit the community.

The types of projects eligible for the programme may include :

  • Social care of all age groups and people with disabilities
  • Caretaking, securing, supervising of community buildings and spaces
  • Renovation of community and sporting facilities, including the regeneration and enhancement of community, recreation and sporting spaces
  • Work in support of cultural and heritage activities
  • Community administration and community event management
  • Coaching for sporting activities
To be eligible to participate in the Tús programme you must have been continuously unemployed for at least 12 months and in receipt of Job seekers allowance (JSA) or Disability Allowance (DA).

Unemployed people who are eligible for the programme will be identified and contacted by their social welfare local office and offered the opportunity to participate in the scheme.  Equally individuals wishing to participate on the programme may self refer through contacting their local Dept of Social Protection Case Officer.

If they agree to participate in the Tús programme they will be referred to Kilkenny LEADER Partnership where they will be recruited for a suitable placement when it becomes available. You can read more about the selection process on welfare.ie.

Participants on Tús can take up other employment provided it does not interfere with the work and times of the Tús work placement. If participants are offered alternative work or training they may terminate their work placement contract if they wish.

Participants will work for 19 ½ hours a week and the placement lasts 12 months. They will receive the same statutory annual leave and public holiday entitlement as other employees.

When the placement finishes, they should sign on again with their local social welfare office. They cannot participate in the Tús scheme again for 3 years.

Since January 2023 the minimum weekly payment for participants (based on 19.5 hours worked) is €247.50.

If your Jobseeker’s Allowance payment (including increases for dependants) was €220 a week or less, then you will get the minimum Tús weekly rate of €247.50 (that is €220 plus €27.50). If your weekly Jobseeker’s Allowance (including any increases for dependants) was €220 or more, then you will get the equivalent rate plus €27.50 (there are some exceptions to this).

Participants will retain any extra benefits and the medical card, provided they are still eligible.

Additional income

If you have any additional income, for example, from part-time work, it will not affect your Tús payment. However, the rules that apply to Jobseeker’s Allowance about reporting a change in your circumstances also apply to the Tús payment. In order to avoid any possible overpayments, if there is any change in your circumstances, you should inform your local development company or Údarás na Gaeltachta and your local Intreo Centre or Social Welfare Branch Office.

If your circumstances change, for example, you get married, have a child or change your working hours; you need to let your Tús supervisor know, as it may affect your payment. You also need to let your supervisor know if your dependant gets a job, as their income will be assessed as means and your Tús payment may be reduced. Your payment cannot be reduced below the minimum rate of €247.50. You should complete an EP1 form and give it to your supervisor.

Spouses or partners and Tús

If you get a place on a Tús scheme and your spouse or partner is claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, Disability Allowance (DA) or Farm Assist in their own right, they can claim an Increase for a Qualified Adult with their JA, DA or Farm Assist. Your income from the Tús scheme (as a single person) is then assessed as insurable employment against their payment.

If you are on a Tús scheme and your spouse or partner gets a place on a Tús scheme, you will each get a single rate of the Tús payment together with half of the Increases for a Qualified Child for any dependent children.

The Tús payment is taxable but the amount payable depends on individual circumstances. Class A PRSI contributions will be paid for all participants.

Participants on the Tús scheme are exempt from the Universal Social Charge.

Assisted/Self –Referral for Tús

While the majority of people referred for Tús are selected on a random basis by the Department, 30% of available places can also be filled by assisted/self-referral.

Download an application or contact Kilkenny LEADER Partnership or your Local Intreo office. The Local Development Company or the jobseeker interested in participating on Tús should forward the application to the Local Intreo Office.

All assisted / self- referral application forms (form attached) must be mediated through a Case Officer in the local Intreo office. The Case Officer will meet or contact the jobseeker to establish the reasons they wish to be considered for the Tús programme and verify eligibility criteria.

All self-referral cases must be completed by the Case Officer. The Case Officer must be satisfied that the eligibility criteria are met and it is in the best interest of the jobseeker to participate on Tús.

Community Groups may download an application using the link below – (Word doc)

If you are a community group seeking a Tus Participant for a short term work project, please click here to download a application form

Community and voluntary organisations interested in providing Tús work placement opportunities should register with their local development company or their Udarás na Gaeltachta office.

Follow this link to the Dept of Social Protection for Frequently Asked Questions and more information.