Community and voluntary groups in Fingal are invited to apply for funding to the 2021 Community Enhancement Programme.
The Community Enhancement Programme provides small grants to enhance facilities in urban and rural communities. Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development and Charities, Joe O’Brien TD, recently announced €4.5 million in funding nationally to support community groups impacted by COVID-19. The CEP is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development with Fingal allocated €150,521 in grant funding towards enhancing facilities available to communities. The Programme has a particular focus on supporting groups in areas of disadvantage. Applications are now sought from community and voluntary groups in Fingal for grants up to a maximum of €10,000, with a closing date for applications of 4pm on July 6th 2021.
The 2021 Community Enhancement Programme (CEP) provides small grants to assist re-opening facilities such as community centres, men’s and women’s sheds, parish halls, clubs and youth centres. The grants range from a few hundred euro to €10,000. Funding will help groups and clubs to get back on their feet and can be used to carry out necessary renovations and repairs, to purchase equipment such as tables and chairs, tools and signage, laptops and printers, lawnmowers, canopies, training equipment and so on. The key theme of this year’s programme is supporting groups as they their re-open facilities which have been closed due to COVID-19.
The CEP is administered by Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) in each Local Authority area. Since it was first launched in 2018, the CEP has funded over 8000 projects in urban and rural communities throughout Ireland.
Speaking about the Community Enhancement Programme, Mayor of Fingal Cllr. David Healy said: “The CEP continues to provide vital support to community groups in Fingal to help them improve their facilities. Fingal County Council offers this support due to our awareness of the central role community groups play in the wellbeing of communities across the County. The scheme provides small-scale funding for projects which range from purchasing lawnmowers and IT equipment to minor renovations to buildings. The Programme responds to local needs and is there to help local groups deliver improvements in their own local areas.”
Commenting on the announcement, AnnMarie Farrelly, Chief Executive of Fingal County Council said: “Fingal County Council really values the work of our community groups and I hope that this funding will help them to continue the important work that they carry out within our county. I urge communities to familiarise themselves with the CEP and to apply for funding if they feel that it can be of local benefit.”
Welcoming the new CEP Scheme, Emer O’Gorman, Fingal County Council’s Director of Economic, Enterprise, Tourism and Cultural Development, said ‘This funding will help significantly as community and voluntary groups recover and their activities return to normal, and I would encourage groups to apply where possible’
Declan Ryan, Chief Officer of the Fingal Local Community Development Committee added: “The CEP Scheme has proved very popular in Fingal with substantial funding approved to Community Groups throughout the County in recent years. While the rules and eligibility criteria for the CEP will be similar to last year, the Fingal LCDC has been given flexibility to target some of this funding for COVID-19 recovery related expenditure by community groups, where demonstrated priorities are identified.”
Full details on the 2021 Community Enhancement Programme and how to apply online can be accessed here