A total of 6 services in Limerick city have benefited from over €450,000 in funding from the Government’s Community Services Programme (CSP) a Fine Gael Senator has said.

The CSP supports community-based organisations delivering vital services through a social enterprise model. Nationwide, some €46 million will be made available under the Programme in 2019.

In Limerick the following local organisations received the funding:

Ballyhoura Development Company:  €72,266, Caherconlish/Caherline Community Council Company: €57,099, Learning Hub Limerick Company: €40,266, Limerick Youth Service: €150,598, Northside Family Resource Centre Company: €79,582, Southill Area Centre Company: €57,099.

All finance comes from Minister Michael Ring’s Rural and Community Development Department.

Senator Maria Byrne said such funding is immensely important to all beneficiaries across Limerick.

“The CSP currently supports community-based organisations to provide local social, economic and environmental services through a social enterprise model, providing a contribution towards the cost of their staff.

“It typically supports organisations to meet local service gaps and provide access to services and facilities that would otherwise generally be unavailable. Eligible organisations are supported under three strands: community halls and facilities, community services for disadvantaged communities and community organisations employing people distant from the labour market,” Senator Byrne said.

Funding is provided to community organisations as a fixed contribution towards the cost of employing a manager and/or an agreed number of full-time equivalent positions (FTEs).  The CSP provides €19,033 per FTE and €32,000 per manager. The contribution is based on a 39 hour working week. More than €46m was allocated nationwide to the programme in 2018, supporting approximately 1,650 FTEs and 300 manager positions.

The Department of Rural and Community Development has, since January 2018, policy responsibility for the programme. The department manages the ‘expressions of interest’ process, agrees all new entrants and exits, and approves new contracts arising from re-contracting processes and funding arrangements and changes to these.

Minister Ring recently appointed Indecon Consultants to carry out an independent review of the programme as no formal review has been carried out since it began in 2006.

“A formal review will ensure the programme is more closely aligned with current department and Government policy and better placed to meet community needs,” Senator Byrne said.



Maria Byrne


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