The Incredible Years Programme for South Tipperary

The Incredible Years programme is designed to support emotional, social and behavioural development in children aged 3 to 10 years. The programme was developed in the University of Washington in Seattle by Dr. Carolyn Webster-Stratton. The Incredible Years series contains three separate training programmes for parents , teachers and children . Whilst each programme has been designed as a stand-alone intervention, taken together, they provide a cohesive and uniform strategy to address and eliminate behavioural difficulties in children.

The Tony Ryan Fund for Tipperary was established by the Tony Ryan Trust through the Community Foundation for Ireland. This fund aims to improve the life experience of children and young people living in County Tiipperary.

The South Tipperary Childrens Services Committee promotes planning and coordination in service provision for children and young people so as to secure better outcomes in term sof their welfare, wellbeing and development.

An interagency group, under the South Tipperary Childrens Services Committee applied for this unique opportunity under the Tony Ryan Fund for Tipperary and were successful in being allocated a grant to deliver the Incredible Years Programme over a two year period into schools and communities across South Tipperary. South Tipperary Development Company ( STDC) is the lead agency for this funding contract.

Opening Night

STDC CEO Niall Morrissey, Tipperary Hurler, Paul Curran and Steering Committee (Phil Shanahan, Claire Cashman, Ann Ryan, Lisa Kavanagh & Ruairi O’Caisleain), accepting funding from The Tony Ryan Trust through the Community Foundation of Ireland.

Why did we choose Incredible Years?

Over almost 30 years the Incredible Years programme has been subjected to rigorous evaluation. Based on the positive outcomes produced in these evaluations a number of separate independent reviews have found that the programme meets the highest standard of scientific proof. This evidence-based validation has seen the programme delivered successfully accross Europe and the UK, the US, Canada,Australia and  has been in  Ireland since 2008.

A Key Principle

The author of the Incredible Years programme, Carolyn Webster-Stratton, in her book The Incredible Years, A Trouble-Shooting Guide for Parents of Children Aged 2-8 Years explains that: the attention rule is the basic principle behind much of what is discussed in her book. She goes on:

Simply stated, it is that children will work for attention from others, especially parents, whether it is positive (praise) or negative (criticism) in nature. If they do not receive positive attention, then they will strive for negative attention since that is better than none at all.

The Incredible Years programme, whether it is the parent, teacher or child element puts this positive approach into practice. Again in the same book, Carolyn lists the Foundations for Successful Parenting as; play, praise, tangible rewards, limit-setting, ignoring, timeout, natural and logical consequences and teaching children to problem-solve. All Incredible Years curricula place strong emphasis on the importance of having this firm foundation laid before introducing any other elements. With these foundations in place the Incredible Years approach examines Communicating and Problem Solving and lastly looks at Common Behaviour Problems that can arise from areas including TV watching, behaviour in public places, child disobedience.

A Key Strength

One of the important strengths of the Incredible Years programme is its unique ability to promote an Inter Agency approach to dealing with emotional and behavioural difficulties in children. The multi-agency approach to the training of those delivering the programme brings together all resources within a community and focuses those resources very positively and collaboratively on children with difficulties.

Who is Archways

Archways is a national organisation working in collaboration with local and national agencies to promote and research evidence based programmes for children & young people. Archways provides a bridge between evidence based programmes and communities and supports the development of sustainable linked practices that build on existing strengths and resources. Archways was established in 2006. Initially the role of Archways was to promote the roll-out and evaluation of the Incredible Years programme in Ireland. Over the last number of years Archways have begun delivering and supporting other evidence based interventions including the Mentoring for Achievement Programme and Families First.

Community Foundation of Ireland

Tony Ryan Fund for Tipperary
“New €1million fund supporting Children and young people in Tipperary”

The Community Foundation for Ireland is delighted to announce that the Tony Ryan Trust has established a fund to ‘Support children and young people in Tipperary to reach their full potential’.
The ‘Tony Ryan Fund for Tipperary’ has been established by the Tony Ryan Trust to give financial support to evidence based initiatives that support children and young people in County Tipperary to reach their full potential. The core focus of the funding is to improve the life experience of Children and Young people living in County Tipperary. Funding of €1million has been committed and it is the intention that the funding will be disbursed over a two to three year timeframe. The funding may include support for training of local trainers to implement agreed programmes.
The Fund will seek to ensure impact from its funding through supporting proposals that are backed by evidence/evaluation of effectiveness, have local champions who will drive the proposal and can show how the proposal will be sustained post the funding. Grants will be made to organisations and/or a consortium of organisations who meet the Fund’s Criteria.


If you are interested in availing of the training, participating in any aspect of the programme or just finding out more about it please contact: Deirdre O’Dwyer, Project Co-ordinator, South Tipperary Development Company on (052) 7442652, (086) 1703473 or

The Incredible Years for Parents

The Incredible Years for Schools

The Incredible Years for Community Organisations