Donegal will receive €290,000 for two community projects from the International Fund for Ireland (IFI) that seeks to improve personal and social skills and identify pathways for progression into education, training or work.
The news comes as a part of a wider initiative by the IFI, with 19 community projects in Northern Ireland and the Republic receiving a total of €3million.
The Donegal area is set to benefit under the Personal Youth Development Programme, with North West Alcohol Forum receiving the largest amount – €207,473 going towards a two-year project called ‘Positive Attitudes, Beliefs & Aspirations’ (PABA) that will provide a structured programme of development activities.
The PABA project will operate across Letterkenny, Milford, Buncrana and Ballybofey and will offer a combination of skills training, personal development and leisure activities.
The remaining €82,529 was awarded to the Downstrands Family Resource Centre to extend and expand the ‘Ignite your Future’ project for one year.
The south-west Donegal project will provide personalised employability training for eight current participants and enrol a new cohort of 12 young people – aged 16-25.
Dr Adrian Johnston, Chairman of the International Fund for Ireland, said:“We still live in a deeply fractured society and political uncertainties are adding greater pressures to communities that are working hard to move forward.
“The risks taken by groups we support cannot be taken for granted. In many difficult areas, the Fund and these groups are delivering the only interventions that are preventing the escalation of tensions and polarisation.
“In challenging circumstances, their ambition and vision deserve to be equally met with political action and leadership.
“With the limited resources available, the Fund is making important contributions that support stability and progress, particularly among communities that had not previously recognised a peace dividend.
“However, the Fund alone is not equipped for the scale of challenges that may emerge during an indefinite political vacuum. Each generation should expect a better life than the last.
“That can only happen if there is political will and adequate resources to help resolve the legacy issues that continue to blight communities.”