November 21, 2023
Senator Paul Gavan secures commitment on Social Intervention Fund for 2024

Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan has received confirmation from the Department for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, that the Economic & Social Intervention Fund (ESIF) will be extended for 2024.

However, Senator Gavan has expressed concern that this commitment is contingent on a strategy to be developed by Limerick City and County Council yet, 6 weeks before the funding ends, this strategy has not yet been received by the department.
 
Following a Seanad debate on the matter, Senator Gavan said:
 
“The announcement that the ESIF funding will be continued into 2024 is very welcome, but I cannot understand why this has not been made clear to any of the groups who are depending on this funding.
 
“Speaking to one of the local groups last week, I was informed that the Council advised management in St Mary’s Park centre to put their staff on notice that they may not have a job next year.
 
“I also cannot understand why contingency plans for funding were not put in place long before the end date which was set 10 years ago. They have had 10 years to prepare for this scenario.
 
“The Economic & Social Intervention Fund for Limerick City was set up under the Limerick Regeneration Framework Implementation Plan.
 
“This plan set out a programme of physical, social, and economic interventions over a ten-year period and is now due to end on the 31st December 2023.
 
“The ESIF has financially supported 180 social, economic, and community development projects across Limerick.
 
“The areas that will be impacted by the loss of this funding include; regeneration areas of Ballinacurra Weston, Moyross, Southill, St Mary’s Park.
 
“Projects affected include the Bedford Row Family Project, Limerick Youth Service and Limerick Island Community Partners serving the King’s Island area.
 
“The ESIF also supports Our Lady of Lourdes Community centre, Southill Area Hub and Moyross groups like Extern Ireland and the community enterprise centre. It has also benefited St Munchin’s Community Enterprise Centre.
 
“These services are the foundation of the communities they support.
 
“Their work is far too important and Limerick can’t afford to lose any of these groups and community centres through lack of funding.”

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