Thursday, 22 September 2022
Saincheisteanna Tráthúla - Topical Issue Debate
We have a €15 million club fund and Sport Ireland has written to all sporting organisations and governing bodies on same. This fund has been kept in reserve from earlier on in the year and, therefore, there will be an injection of support for grassroots clubs before the end of the year that will provide a significant support to clubs and sporting organisations. We are focused on participation grants that resulted from Covid. As the Deputy will be aware, some of the indoor sports were more affected than some of the outdoor sports but we are trying to focus on the participation gap and a €15 million club fund will be delivered into the grassroots system prior to the year end.
We are also conscious of the difficulties the Deputy mentioned regarding energy costs and we are in discussions on that. As a Government we have been clear that we want to support society and our voluntary sector when it comes to the impact of the cost of living. Given we backed all of these organisations through Covid, it is important we sustain their progress over the coming months and during the winter. We are also clear when it comes to our ambition for the LSSIF and 22 of the projects will advance shortly while there is a funding gap for some of the others. Some of that is not specifically related to funding but to other matters that have to be concluded. These are large multimillion euro projects and it is not simply a funding question. Some of them have not been able to advance for other reasons. There is proactive work by the LSSIF division in my Department. We want to ensure we get drawdown quickly and we are there as willing partners to make sure the funding is given out and that these projects can commence. We are keen to advance them but there were construction delays. There is a financial gap for some of these projects but we are keen to ensure progress over the coming months.