Donegal’s Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) has this week approved €476,000 for 14 new projects under the LEADER Rural Development Programme.
The projects funded this week range from festivals to arts, sport and heritage projects to capital works type initiatives in community centres.
Chair of the Donegal LCDC Cllr Martin McDermott believes that these funds are instrumental to support development in rural areas in Donegal saying “we have identified a number of objectives in Donegal that we want to see achieved through the LEADER Rural Development Programme including rural tourism, enterprise development, rural towns, broadband, basic services targeting hard to reach communities, rural youth, sustainable use of water resources, improvement of local biodiversity and the development of renewable energy.”
The LEADER Rural Development Programme which runs from 2014 to 2020 aims to improve the quality of life in rural areas and to encourage diversification of economic activity in rural areas and almost €13m has been allocated to Donegal under this Programme. In Donegal three key themes have been identified in the roll out of this programme including Economic Development, Enterprise Development and Job Creation, Social Inclusion and Rural Environment.
This funding programme is administered by four implementing partners in Donegal including Donegal Local Development Company (DLDC), Inishowen Development Partnership, Údarás na Gaeltachta and Comhar na nOileán and the final decisions on project funding rests with the Donegal LCDC Local Action Group which is supported by Donegal County Council.
Cllr McDermott is urging local community groups and businesses to continue to come forward with applications to the LEADER programme saying “this funding presents a great opportunity for groups and businesses across Donegal to deliver innovative and meaningful projects in their local areas and I would encourage any group or business with an idea to engage with the implementing partners to see how the ambitions for their area or business can be supported.”