Written answers

Tuesday, 14 May 2024

Department of Rural and Community Development

Departmental Funding

Photo of Damien EnglishDamien English (Meath West, Fine Gael)
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688. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development if she will open up a new round of funding for upgrade and refurbishment works in community centres in County Meath. [21213/24]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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Community centres are a vital resource for any community. They are where we go for community activities and events, and for social supports and social interaction. They are home to many of our cultural and sporting clubs. They are also where communities come together in times of difficulty and in times of celebration.

I have prioritised the development and enhancement of community centres across the country under the range of schemes implemented by my Department.

Under the 2022 Community Centre Investment Fund in particular, over €45.8 million was committed for improvement and refurbishment works on over 860 existing community centres across Ireland. There was a huge uptake of this funding and communities are now enjoying the improvements to the fabric of their community centres as a result of this Government initiative.

I am happy to confirm that there were thirteen projects allocated funding of almost €300,000 in Co Meath under the 2022 Community Centre Investment fund.

Following on from this investment, I wanted to assist community groups who are striving to build their own community centre to service their local needs. That is why, in 2023, the focus of the Community Centres Investment Fund moved to new builds and I announced a new fund to support communities with shovel-ready projects on green or brownfield sites for the construction of new community centres. Last month I approved funding of €30 million for construction of 12 new community centres covering nine counties. I am delighted to confirm that Kilcloon Community Centre in Co Meath was successful in their application to the new builds scheme, with over €1.9 million being approved under the fund.

I am now giving consideration to the need for further rounds of funding and indeed the conditions that might be attached to any further iterations of the scheme in the context of available funding.


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