The Community Services Programme, or CSP, supports around 400 community organisations to provide local services through a social enterprise model. Funding is provided as a contribution to the cost of a manager and an agreed number of full-time equivalent (FTE) positions.
More than €46 million is available under the programme in 2019. Between part-time and full-time positions, approximately 3,000 people are supported through the CSP, comprising 1,660 FTEs and 306 managers.
Since my Department took responsibility for the programme in 2018 some 40 new organisations have entered the CSP and additional new entrants are expected during 2019.
My Department recently commenced a review of the programme. A review was considered opportune as the programme had not been formally reviewed since 2006, during which time the external environment had changed significantly.
The review will consider how the programme fits with overall Government priorities, as well as with my Department’s other community programmes and policy objectives, and will help inform decisions on the future shape and structure of the CSP.
The review is being carried out by an independent review body, Indecon Consultants. It will take six months to complete, with a final report expected in early Autumn 2019.