Government announces €50 million investment under first ever Community Recognition Fund

  • over 880 projects across every single county to receive funding as part of the first ever Community Recognition Fund
  • €50 million investment for sports clubs, schools, community organisations and other local groups
  • major initiative to support and reward communities that have welcomed Ukrainians and other nationalities
  • projects range from largescale multi-purpose sports facilities, upgrades to community centres, equipment for sports clubs, outdoor walkways, playgrounds, community buses and equipment for festivals
  • funding to be administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development

The government has today announced €50 million in funding for over 880 projects as part of the first-ever Community Recognition Fund.

The major initiative is designed to support and reward communities that have welcomed families and citizens from Ukraine and other countries.

The details of the announcement were made during a visit to Lourdes Parish Hall on Dublin’s Sean McDermott Street by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and Minister of State Joe O’Brien.

This particular project is receiving €770,000 to upgrade the facility for the benefit of the local community.

Other examples of successful projects receiving funding today include:

  • Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim: €1 million – To develop a new multi-sports regional campus
  • Tralee, Co. Kerry: €1.03 million – To significantly upgrade Tralee Boxing Club
  • Saggart, South Co. Dublin: €391,820 – Upgrade of St. Mary’s GAA pitch in Saggart Village to all-weather surface with associated lighting
  • Lisdoonvarna, Co Clare: €168,111 – Development of a new floodlit Multi Use Games Area (MUGA)
  • Swords, North County Dublin: €466,512 – Upgrade and enhancement of Holywell Park including provision of Exercise Equipment; Half Basketball Court; Boules Area; Table Tennis Tables; Play Area; Tree Trail; Youth Hub and Learn to Cycle Track: €466,512
  • Stamullen, Co. Meath: €207,000 – Installation of playground equipment and safety surfacing
  • Carlow Town, Co. Carlow: €180,000 – Improvements at Carlow Town Oak Forest Park
  • Gweedore, Co, Donegal: €315,000 – Major upgrade to the facilities and Gweedore Celtic and other works
  • Breaffy, Co. Mayo: €75,000 – Upgrade to the community pitch lighting and kitchen facilities at Breaffy GAA Club
  • Glengarrif, County Cork: €75,000 – Development of a tennis court/multi-purpose all weather pitch
  • Athlone, Co. Westmeath: €250,000 – Refurbishment of St Mary’s Community Hall

The €50 million Community Recognition Fund has been allocated across all local authorities based on the number of new arrivals located there (see allocations below).

The Fund, administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development, follows an extensive consultation process with local authorities who submitted their individual list of projects for approval.

Announcing the first tranche of the successful projects, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said:

“Communities across Ireland have responded to the migration crisis, whether it involves people fleeing the war in Ukraine or seeking asylum from other parts of the world. We have opened our homes, schools, sporting and community facilities.

“Your generosity and kindness epitomises the very best of the wonderful community spirit we have across Ireland.

“So I am delighted to announce the approval of €50 million for projects all over Ireland under this major investment.

“This funding will go directly to communities who have responded, developing projects like sports facilities, community vehicles and bus shelters, walks, playgrounds and equipment for sports clubs for the benefit of all residents, old and new.”

Minister Humphreys added:

“This €50 million Community Recognition Fund is all about recognising the efforts of communities who have gone above and beyond during what has been a very challenging period for our country.

“It’s about supporting towns and villages nationwide that have shown such generosity in welcoming people from Ukraine and other countries.

“Through this initiative, we will develop parks and recreational amenities. We will fund sports and outdoor equipment, transport infrastructure, playgrounds and even festivals.

“This is about giving back, it’s about saying ‘thank you’ to communities for their efforts.

“I look forward to seeing the positive impact that this funding will have on the ground in communities all across Ireland.”

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said:

“I want to join with my government colleagues in supporting this initiative. The response by Irish communities has been nothing short of phenomenal.

“The Community Recognition Fund is recognising the contribution being made by communities in welcoming and hosting significant numbers fleeing the conflict in Ukraine and other countries.

“Ireland can be rightly proud of our response to this crisis and many sectors continue to play their part.

“For example, the Healthy Ireland Programme works in partnership with local government and communities to improve the health and wellbeing of everyone in Ireland through the Sláintecare Healthy Communities Programme and the Healthy Cities and Counties initiative.”

Minister for Community Development and Charities Joe O’Brien said:

“It is right that communities that have welcomed large numbers of new arrivals are recognised in some tangible way.

“This fund will help those communities to develop projects ranging from large-scale multi-purpose sports facilities to transport infrastructure such as community vehicles, bus shelters, walkways, cycle paths, playgrounds and equipment for sports clubs.

“We want to further strengthen local communities, to further empower them to utilise community spaces for the benefit of all in the community.”

Details of the successful projects announced are available on the department’s website.