Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Questions (503, 510)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

503. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the schemes available by which community-based voluntary groups can avail of quality of life enhancement assistance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52147/18]

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Bernard Durkan

Question:

510. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the main headings under which he will be in a position to offer financial assistance to voluntary groups throughout County Kildare and nationally; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52154/18]

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Written answers (Question to Rural)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 503 and 510 together.

My Department operates a number of funding programmes and schemes that are open to applications from relevant parties, including groups in the voluntary sector, who satisfy the relevant criteria during the application timeframes set for each scheme/programme.

This includes a range of direct supports to projects in Co Kildare and across the country that are developed or administered by community groups and my Department will continue this investment into 2019.

The Scheme to Support National Organisations (SSNO) provides multi-annual funding towards core costs of national organisations in the voluntary sector, with a focus on organisations that provide supports to those who are disadvantaged. The current three-year scheme runs to 30 June 2019, and all funding has been fully allocated for 2018.

Additionally, €3.5 million was allocated by my Department in 2018 to support the work of volunteering organisations.

The Community Services Programme (CSP), which has an allocation for 2018 of €44 million, supports community-based organisations to provide local social, economic and environmental services through a social enterprise model for services which are not being met through public or private funding. €429,078 was allocated to Kildare in 2018.

The Community Enhancement Programme provides small capital grants to community groups across the country, including Men's Sheds, and has been allocated a total of €13million in 2018, of which €468,671 has been allocated to groups in Kildare.

The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) is a key intervention for disadvantaged communities, offering supports to both individuals and local community groups. The current programme commenced at the start of 2018 and runs until 2022 and is delivered locally by Local Development Companies in 51 Lot Areas. The funding allocation to County Kildare for 2018 was €1,061,036.

I also approved funding of €73,000 to Tidy Towns committees in Kildare in 2018. The work done by these committees is of great value to local communities and we should all be grateful for the effort they make in our towns and villages.

Voluntary and community groups may also be able to access funding under the CLÁR Programme and the Town and Village Renewal Scheme.

Funding may also be available under the LEADER Programme to support community and voluntary groups in rural Ireland. The Kildare Local Action Group (LAG) have been allocated €5,261,600 over the 2014-2020 programming period and applications for funding can be made to the LAG.

The Seniors Alert Scheme provides personal monitored alarms to enable older people, of limited means, to continue to live securely in their homes with confidence, independence and peace of mind. The Scheme is administered on behalf of my Department by Pobal, with applicants applying via community organisations operating in their local area. Since Pobal took over the administration of the Scheme in September 2015, 16 community organisations have been approved to operate the Scheme in Co. Kildare.

Further information on all funding programmes and schemes is available on my Department's website.