Thursday, 5 December 2019
Department of Rural and Community Development
27. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development the analysis carried out to ensure the most disadvantaged communities in County Wexford previously identified in RAPID areas are receiving adequate support and funding under the community enhancement programme since the closure of the programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [50424/19]
Under the original RAPID programme, funding was ring-fenced for areas designated as RAPID. The key difference with the new Community Enhancement Programmeis that funding is allocated to every Local Authority area, on the basis of population and the deprivation level in each area.
This is done using the Pobal Hasse deprivation index. This measures the wealth or disadvantage of a particular area using data compiled from the Census.
Once funding is provided to each Local Authority area, the Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) then administers the programme. LCDCs monitor the programme and ensure that the funding is benefiting communities, urban and rural, across the country in the fairest way possible. This approach ensures that local knowledge and up-to-date information is used to allocate funding, rather than only providing funding to areas designated as RAPID a number of years ago. In 2019, Wexford was allocated €150,065 under the Community Enhancement Programme.
The Community Enchantment Programme is not the only way in which my Department provides support to disadvantaged areas. For example, the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme, or SICAP, which runs from 2018 to 2022 is our country’s primary social inclusion intervention. This is a €190m national programme that is delivered locally, to help those in the greatest need. In 2020, Wexford is being allocated €1,752,800 under SICAP, an increase of 3% relative to 2019.