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'Helping Hands' events underway

Published: 25 April 2019
From: Department of Rural and Community Development

Events are aimed at groups that have received little or no funding in the past

​Michael Ring TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development, has announced the launch of 'Helping Hands', events which will provide information to community groups on how to submit effective applications for grant funding.

The free event forms part of the “Helping Hands” initiative, a series of six regional events running to the end of May. These events provide information on how to submit applications for grant funding and are aimed at groups that have received little or no funding in the past.

Speaking about funding for rural communities Minister Ring said:

“Recently I hosted a number of Rural Opportunity events around the country where I have met with community groups and seen first-hand how the funding they received has enabled them to deliver their successful projects. I recognise that the application process is often a daunting one for volunteers or other small organisations to negotiate.
“The “Helping Hands” series of events which kicked off in Ballina is aimed at helping groups that may not have been that successful in getting grant funding in the past. Sometimes the groups that have good ideas, and need it most, don’t make applications or are unsuccessful when they do.
“My department and the wider government make many grants available to community groups. For example, I recently made €4.5m available under the Community Enhancement Programme. This initiative will help to ensure that groups with good ideas get their fair share.”

The “Helping Hands” events aim to provide hints and tips on how to make a better application and how to identify local supports that community groups can draw upon.

The events in each region are being run by the Department of Rural and Community Development with support from Pobal, the local authority, the Irish Local Development Network, and the Local Development Company/Companies.

    Region Date Venue
    Dublin Region 30th May Darndale Belcamp VC, Coolock, Dublin. Click here to register.
    East Region 28th May St Mary’s Youth & Community Centre, Tullamore, Co Offaly. Click here to register.
    Mid-West Region 23rd May Southill Area Centre, Limerick. Click here to register.

|South Region|16th May|James O’Keefe Institute, Newmarket, Co Cork

|Border Region|9th May|Finn Valley, Stranorlar, Co Donegal

    West Region 25th April Kennedy Glasgow Centre, Ballina, Co Mayo. The event in Mayo also served as a showcase of local development work in the area.


Notes to Editor:

  • the Department of Rural and Community Development was established by the government in 2017 to promote rural and community development and to help build vibrant, sustainable communities across the country
  • supports available through the department include funding to support the regeneration of Towns and Villages throughout Ireland, to facilitate the recreational use of the countryside through the Walks scheme, to improve the roads systems in remote rural areas and to improve the services in depopulated CLÁR areas
  • the department also provides a range of supports for the local government system including funding and capacity building supports for Local Community Development Committees and libraries
  • the department is also responsible for the allocation of the new Project Ireland 2040 €1bn Rural Regeneration and Development Fund which will provide a significant level of funding to support the sustainable development of rural communities over the next 10 years. In addition, through the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme the department seeks to support individuals to participate fully in society and through the Community Services Programme supports local initiatives that ensure social cohesion and the maintenance of community spirit. Organisations such as Volunteer Ireland and the Public Participation Networks that work with communities to increase participation and involvement at a local level also benefit from support from the department
  • Pobal works on behalf of government to support communities and local agencies toward achieving social inclusion and development
  • Pobal provides management and support services to circa 23 programmes in the areas of Social Inclusion and Equality, Inclusive Employment and Enterprise, and Early Years and Young People. They administer these programmes on behalf of the department of Rural and Community Development, Department of Children and Youth Affairs, Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, as well as the department of Health/HSE and a number of EU bodies
  • Pobal works on an all-island basis, with offices in Dublin, Monaghan, Sligo, Clifden, Letterkenny, Cork, Galway city, Limerick and Kilkenny, employing over 400 staff

The Irish Local Development Network CLG (ILDN) is the representative body for the country’s 49 Local Development Companies who deliver RDP LEADER, Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme, Rural Social Scheme, Tús, Local Employment Service, Jobs Clubs, Rural Recreation Programme, The Walks Scheme, Back to Work Enterprise Allowance and social enterprise programmes across rural and urban Ireland.