Report demonstrates the importance of the Department as increased levels of supports and funding were provided to groups and organisations in rural Ireland and in communities across the country
Mr Michael Ring TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development has today (Friday, 26 June 2020) welcomed the publication of his Department’s Annual Report for 2019.
The report gives a comprehensive overview of the work of the Department in 2019, as well as the programmes and initiatives through which these supports were delivered.
Highlights include the completion of the first projects supported through the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, which was launched at the end of 2018. Continued investment in the Fund led to the approval of €148 million in funding to 110 projects by the end of 2019.
Significant investments in rural development continued through the LEADER Programme, Town and Village Renewal Scheme, the Local Improvement Scheme, the Outdoor Recreation Scheme and the CLÁR Programme. 2019 also saw the first phase in increasing the number of trails in the Walks Scheme, with an additional 10 trails added to the scheme.
Local organisations and vulnerable people also received increased supports through community development programmes such as the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme, the Community Services Programme and the Seniors Alert Scheme.
Minister Ring said:
I am very pleased with the great progress my Department has made in a very short time since its establishment in 2017. The supports being provided are having positive impacts up and down the country. We invested more than €290 million in rural areas and communities in 2019, ensuring that Government funding and investment is supporting our objectives throughout the country.
I was also delighted to launch a number of key Government strategies in 2019, including Ireland’s first National Social Enterprise Policy and a five-year strategy for the Community and Voluntary Sector. Work began on a new national volunteering strategy and the next rural development policy was also substantially advanced during the year.
Minister Ring also thanked the staff of the Department and his ministerial colleague, Seán Canney TD, for their work in 2019, adding:
I’m grateful to Minister of State Canney for his dedicated work during 2019, and would also like to mark the invaluable contributions of the staff and management team in the Department.
The Department’s Annual Report has been published bilingually and can be found here: https://www.gov.ie/en/organisation-information/91ae40-annual-reports/