Kildare County projects received total funding of €70,234 under the Community Enhancement Programme in 2020.

Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development and Charities, Joe O’Brien TD, announced that €7 million was made available to over 3,000 projects nationally through the 2020 Community Enhancement Programme (CEP).

Minister  Heydon commented that  “The Community Enhancement Programme is designed to support community groups, particularly in disadvantaged areas, through the provision of small capital grants.

“Eight projects in Kildare benefitted from the Programme in 2020, with a total of €70,234 granted.”

Some of the projects that benefited were the Kildare Branch of Down Syndrome Ireland, the 2nd Kildare Newbridge Scout Group,Athy Rugby Club, and Nurney GAA.

“The Community Enhancement Programme was focused on meeting the challenges of the pandemic in 2020. For example it could be used for the development of COVID-19 compliant play areas for children. It was also designed to help with the purchase of COVID-19 related equipment to facilitate the reopening and upgrade of community premises, as well as the purchase of equipment to maintain community gardens and areas. It could also be used to purchase items like marquees, heaters, IT and other equipment to facilitate social distancing.

“Groups who wish to apply this year should contact their Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) for details when the 2021 CEP is launched later this year”, Minister Heydon concluded.

Minister Humphreys added: “The Community Enhancement Programme has supported a varied and wide-ranging list of projects in every county of Ireland across 2020.

The Programme shows how relatively small amounts of funding can make a big difference to communities and organisations that carry out really important work.

“If we’ve learned anything in recent months, as we’ve coped with this Pandemic, it’s the importance of our small community groups.

“They have gone above and beyond in 2020 and I am delighted as Minister to support them.

“I am delighted that an additional €5 million was secured as part of the July Stimulus for community centres which is making a big difference across the country.”