17 towns and villages across County Galway are to benefit from a newly created fund aimed at supporting communities that have welcomed families and citizens from Ukraine and other countries in recent times.
€1,266,625 has been allocated under the Community Recognition Fund for the purpose of upgrading a range of community-based amenities from community centres and parish halls to playgrounds and town parks.
Managed by the Department of Rural and Community Development through the ‘Our Rural Future and Project Ireland 2040’ programme, the Fund aims to support the development of facilities that will be used by all members of the community with funding allocated across all local authorities based on the number of new community arrivals.
The local projects in receipt of funding include the delivery of an accessible walkway to the beach at An Spidéal, the upgrade of the town park in Kinvara, an extension of the Glenamaddy community walkway, the installation of an outdoor shelter in Letterfrack, the provision of sensory play equipment for the Western Traveller & Intercultural development in Tuam, and the refurbishment of playgrounds in Claregalway, Kiltormer, Oranmore, Clifden, Maam Cross, Oughterard, Kinvara, Loughrea, Gort and Clonbur.
Cllr. Michael “Moegie” Maher, Cathaoirleach of Galway County Council, commented, “Communities across our county have afforded a warm welcome to thousands of Ukrainian citizens and others seeking international protection over the past year. Galway County Council and other local agencies has worked closely with the Government to ensure that communities have been supported through this period. This newly created fund is just recognition of the fantastic response of everyone involved in providing such a warm welcome.”
Liam Conneally, Chief Executive of Galway County Council, said, “The local authority Is delighted to be able to administer this unique fund at a local level and in doing so, deliver significant improvements to amenities and transport infrastructure in our towns and villages for the benefit of everybody in those communities.”
Cllr. Noel Thomas, Chair of the Galway County Local Community and Economic Development Committee (LCDC), stated, “This very welcome announcement that forms part of a €50 million package servicing 880 projects across Ireland. The projects that will be undertaken through the Fund will breathe new life into local communities throughout the county.”
Commenting on the selection of local projects across County Galway, Alan Farrell, Director of Economic Development with Galway County Council, explained, “Projects were selected and prioritised locally following an expressions of interest process carried out in the county earlier this year. A funding proposal was then submitted by Galway County Council to the Department of Rural and Community Development for final approval. We are delighted with the positive response to our submission and look forward to works getting underway across the county in the coming weeks and months.”
Community projects benefiting under the Community Recognition Fund:
- Athenry: Refurbish Playground (€48,000);
- Barna: Upgrade Playground (€46,582);
- Carna: Design Outdoor Plaza; Install Bus Shelter (€85,000);
- An Cheathrú Rua: Refurbishments to the Community Centre; Upgrade Astro Turf Surface (€143,936)
- Claregalway: Refurbish playground/youth space; Upgrade community walkway; Equipment for local groups (€81,844);
- Clifden: Refurbish playground and Purchase Sound System (€87,160);
- Clonbur: Refurbish Community Centre (€47,760);
- Glenamaddy: Town Hall Theatre refurbishment & equipment; Parish Hall refurbishment, windows; – Additional phase of Community Walkway with benches, shelters, signage; equipment for Community Gym (€62,639);
- Gort: Install lift in community centre; Refurbish playground (€54,676);
- Kiltormer: Refurbish Playground (€50,000);
- Kiltullagh: Install Natural Play Areas (€40,000);
- Kinvara: Refurbish playground; Upgrade Town Parks (€58,350);
- Letterfrack: Outdoor Shelter (€16,374);
- Loughrea: Refurbish Playgrounds (€57,000);
- Maam Cross: Refurbish community centre and playground (€71,627);
- Oranmore: Resurface playground; install playground equipment and park benches (€157,510);
- Oughterard: Upgrade playground equipment & repair trails; Community Gym equipment (€60,167);
- An Spidéal: Install accessible walkway to beach (€25,000); and
- Tuam: Upgrade Community Park; (€68,000) Sensory Play Equipment for Western Traveller facility (€5,000).