SOCIAL GOOD: Half-million-euro Resilient Communities Fund 2017 launched in Cork

10 November 2017
By Bryan Smyth

Pictured are, Emma Lane-Spollen, CEO of the Tomar Trust, Derval O’Rourke, Former World Champion and healthy lifestyle consultant and Eoghan Ryan, Resilient Communities Fund Manager, at Camden Fort Meagher, Crosshaven, Co. Cork.
Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Irish communities set to overcome any obstacle: A new €500,000 Resilient Communities Fund opens for local projects strengthening community resilience.

Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) and Tomar Trust have announced the launch of Resilient Communities Fund 2017. The €500,000 fund provides grants and support to innovative projects that strengthen community resilience and have an economic, social or environmental impact.

Speaking at the launch, former world champion and healthy lifestyle consultant, Derval O’Rourke said “I’m proud to support Social Innovation Fund Ireland and the Tomar Trust launch this exciting Resilient Communities Fund. I’m always amazed at how innovative towns and villages across Ireland can be at tackling local issues.’’

Resilient Communities is a €500,000 fund, created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland in partnership with the Tomar Trust and the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Department of Rural and Community Development provides matched funding for philanthropic funds raised by Social Innovation Fund Ireland, from the Dormant Accounts Fund.
So, for every euro Social Innovation Fund Ireland raises from private benefactors, the government matches that – and the funds are then distributed to projects that make a real impact on people’s lives.

This new Resilient Communities Fund will provide critical supports to projects focused on making communities across Ireland safer, healthier, and more vibrant. The deadline for applications is the 31st January 2018.

Speaking at the launch, Eoghan Ryan, Resilient Communities Fund Manager said, “The partnership between Social Innovation Fund Ireland and the Tomar Trust will enable transformative local projects to grow and spread.’’

Successful projects will receive a cash grant and a place on Social Innovation Fund’s Accelerator; a programme designed to help them grow and develop their ideas into powerful community solutions through ongoing support and advice.

“We already know that there are many communities building resilience across Ireland, creating sustainable jobs, addressing rural isolation, increasing biodiversity or developing community-owned renewable energy schemes. Through the Social Innovation Fund we are looking to support the best, innovative projects that address critical issues, which are innovative and build that social capital that makes us resilient as a community.” said Emma Lane-Spollen, CEO of Tomar Trust.

“Successful projects will be able to demonstrate impact and strike us as having an approach that should be shared with other communities and could be replicated. This fund will enable such organisations to strengthen what they do, raise their profile locally and nationally and look at potential for national impact”, said Deirdre Mortell, CEO of Social Innovation Fund Ireland.

About Social Innovation Fund Ireland
Social Innovation Fund Ireland is a charity created by the Government, in order to establish a philanthropic fund of significant size and impact to aid the development of social innovation. Starting at €10 million the programme for a Partnership Government 2016 commits to building this to €50 million. The organisation’s mission is to provide growth capital and supports to the best social innovations in Ireland, enabling them to scale and maximise their impact. Board members include: Terence O’Rourke (Chair), John Higgins, Caitriona Fottrell, Gareth Morgan, Shane Deasy, Dalton Philips, Alf Smiddy, and Rosheen McGuckian.

About Tomar Trust
The Tomar Trust is based in Cork and has a history of providing meaningful philanthropic support to a variety of intersecting community needs; from education to poverty relief to older people and to the advancement of arts and culture.
The Trust has recently entered into a new ten-year phase during which it will focus on fewer strategic priorities delivering social benefit locally whilst also influencing on a national scale.

Picture: Jim Coughlan.

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