Written answers

Thursday, 17 November 2022

Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth

Asylum Seekers

Photo of Pauline TullyPauline Tully (Cavan-Monaghan, Sinn Fein)
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129. To ask the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth the additional supports that he has put in place to ensure that local communities in counties Cavan and Monaghan that have welcomed refugees and asylum seekers are not in a position of having to use funding and resources that were previously allocated before the current crisis in Ukraine; the supports that he has ensured are delivered from other Departments; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [56980/22]

Photo of Roderic O'GormanRoderic O'Gorman (Dublin West, Green Party)
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Annually, a total of €500,000 is made available by my Department under the Communities Integration Fund (CIF) to local community-based organisations to carry out integration projects in their local areas. Organisations eligible to apply include local community groups, sports clubs, faith-based groups, arts groups, cultural organisations, and schools. In 2022, two Cavan-based projects received funding; Cavan County Local Development and Teach Oscail Family Resource Centre. No Monaghan-based organisations applied for funding.

My Department also provides funding to support the integration of migrants through the National Integration Fund (NIF). NIF funding is provided over three years, and the last funding call was in 2020. Projects generally have a broader geographical scope than CIF projects, with many operating in multiple counties or nationwide. One project, Sports Against Racism Ireland, specifically mentioned Cavan in its application. There will be another NIF funding call launched in 2023.

In July, my Department launched the International Protection Integration Fund 2022. This new grant scheme was designed to enable community-based organisations across Ireland to support the integration of International Protection applicants. A total of €1.6 million has since been awarded to 67 organisations, with 10 initiatives targeting applicants in Monaghan and 7 initiatives targeting applicants in Cavan. Proposed initiatives in those counties include the establishment of language cafés to encourage the development of conversational English skills, and the delivery of wellbeing workshops aimed at bolstering the mental health of young people in the International Protection system.

My Department has recently run an open Call for Proposals for projects under the Integration and Employment of Migrants stream of the European Social Fund Plus, 2021-2027 Employment, Inclusion, Skills and Training programme. This call placed particular emphasis on providing employment-readiness supports to Ukrainian refugees. Information on successful projects will be publicised shortly.

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