I recently launched Sustainable, Inclusive and Empowered Communities: a Five-Year Strategy to Support the Community and Voluntary sector in Ireland 2019-2024. This Strategy sets a general direction of travel for Government policy in relation to community development, local development and the community and voluntary sector and will be implemented in partnership with sectoral stakeholders over the next five years and beyond.
The Strategy was prepared by my Department with the support of the Cross Sectoral Group on Local and Community Development. The organisation referred to by the Deputy was an active participant on the Cross Sectoral Group.
Action 4.1 of the Strategy commits to developing a sustainable funding model to support the community and voluntary sector in line with the commitment in the programme for Government. The action specifically identifies the need to fully consider the cost of compliance and relevant overhead and administration costs when developing such a model. This action will be led by my Department with collaboration from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and other relevant Government departments.
As the Strategy will entail far reaching changes across Government and the community and voluntary sector, it will require an incremental building of supports over the period of the strategy and beyond. This will be the case particularly for those actions, such as Action 4.1, which will require larger scale and sustained funding support.
My Department officials have begun the work needed to start implementing the actions contained in this strategy and while I acknowledge that the delivery of some of the actions will take time, I am committed to fully achieving the objectives of this Strategy.