Donegal Local Development Company CLG (DLDC) together with Donegal Intercultural Platform and Donegal Travellers Project (DTP) are delighted to announce that the ‘ThinkEquality’ Project has been awarded multi-year funding from the Equality Fund.
The Fund supports organisations and groups that empower marginalised communities and tackle systemic inequality.
“A total of eleven civil-society projects throughout Ireland have been selected to share part of the €3million funding and we are delighted that ThinkEquality is among the chosen projects,” said a spokersperson for DLDC.
ThinkEquality is an equal partnership between the three aforementioned organisations working collaboratively to eliminate prejudice, discrimination and racism throughout Donegal and promote the full and meaningful inclusion of Black Minority Ethnic Communities including Traveller and Roma Communities across rural Donegal including on local decision making structures.
The project will seek to build dynamic relationships at an individual and societal level which will be based on understanding, acceptance, trust, respect and equality. This initiative will continue to act and struggle for Human Rights and Equality at a county and regional level.
This ThinkEquality project was largely born from the challenges and positive outcomes of the Building Intercultural Communities project funded under PEACE IV. The partners were determined to spread their collaborative footprint and seek support to deepen and extend some of the key issues arising from this work.
They recognised that there were significant challenges in embedding equality and diversity consciousness in agencies and state organisations, the Local Authority and the larger employers. So they developed an online training tool to introduce the issues and realities of Racism, Discrimination, Inequality and the opportunities of Diversity and wanted to develop and expand this.
According to DTP Manager, Siobhan Mc Laughlin “We saw the need for building resilient links within and between communities that would see a real benefit and tangible progress for members of Black and Minority Ethnic Communities and go far beyond the initial steps taken on the BIC PEACE project. We also wanted to spread this work and engagement across the county and to develop approaches and outputs that could be shared with other rural counties and possible models of inclusive Diversity-focused work that would advance equity and equality in community, state and commercial arenas”.
Padraic Fingleton CEO of DLDC added “We are delighted to be awarded the Equality Funding which will support us to continue to develop initiatives to address prejudice, fight discrimination and stamp out racism in our community. It will enable us to continue to work together to make sure we can embrace diversity and enhance equality. We need to develop a more inclusive society for all of our people no matter what culture, background or ethnicity”.
Angela O’Leary Chairperson of Donegal Travellers Project, a local independent community development and Human Rights organisation said that “In our twenty-eighth year of promoting human rights and equality for the Traveller Community we are delighted that we will now act and struggle in solidarity with Donegal Local Development Company and Donegal Intercultural Platform for the full and meaningful inclusion of BME including Traveller and Roma communities in the county”.
Billy Banda Director of the Donegal Intercultural Platform stated “I’m really excited to be part of this new ThinkEquality initiative. So many of my friends from Black and Minority Ethnic communities, including Travellers and Roma, are looking forward to this project. We believe it can enable us to create the conditions for real inclusion, participation and representation for BMEs in all areas of social, educational and economic life in Donegal”.
The Awardees of the Equality Fund 2020-2023 are:
The Great Care Co-Op
Tipperary Rural Travellers Project
Migrant Rights Centre Ireland
Sex Workers Alliance Ireland
The National Platform of Self Advocates
Think Equality Donegal
Irish Network Against Racism