Community development

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New funding scheme for national voluntary organizations

Exclusion of Community Workers Cooperative criticized

The Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan, told Joan Collins (PBP, Dublin SC) that he had approved funding for 63 organizations under the 2011-2013 scheme for national voluntary organizations (Dail Eireann, Debates, 16th June 2011, 699-700; 21st June 187-190, including list).  This replaced the previous scheme which funded 64 organizations with €16m over 2008-2010 for which a comprehensive review had been carried out in 2010.  In the new scheme, there were 149 applications.  46 of those funded now had been supported under the previous scheme.  €4m was available in 2011.  The criteria and marking used were:

  • The extent of focus on disadvantage, 20%;
  • Deliverables and impact of the funding, 25%;
  • Level of added value, 20%;
  • Viability, value for money and governance, 20%;
  • Level of cooperation/integration/consolidation with similar or allied organizations, 15%.

To be awarded funding, an organization must obtain 60%.  Asked specifically about the Community Workers Cooperative, the minister told Padraig MacLochlann (SF, Donegal NE) that it did not obtain the necessary marks (> See also Dail Eireann, Debates, 21st June 2011, 192, questions by Pearse Doherty (SF, Donegal SW)).  Again asked specifically about the Cooperative by Dara Calleary (FF, Mayo) and Aengus Ó Snodaigh (SF, Dublin SC), the minister told them that organizations participating in the previous scheme were aware that continued funding could not be guaranteed and that the scheme was subject to review.  The cooperative had appealed the decision and the appeals process was under way (Dail Eireann, Debates, 28th June 2011, 895).

> List of 2010 beneficiaries: Dail Eireann, Debates, 21st June 2011, 193-194.