Irish Rural link welcome the commitments in the Programme For Government to rural communities. We need to learn from the positive aspects of the Covid pandemic and build on these for e.g. the advantages of remote working, the value of rural volunteering and the value of such services as meals on wheels and other essential community health and social services.
In his statement President Michael D.Higgins sincerely thanked all of the Champions and volunteers who have been involved in the Community Outreach Programme for making themselves available to give a helping hand to those who need it now, at this difficult time. The full statement is available to read here
Irish Rural Link (IRL) has today welcomed the announcement by Minister Michael Ring and Minister Sean Canney, of a COVID-19 support package of €40 million for Community and Voluntary Organisations, Charities and Social Enterprises. Full statement is available here
The package consists of a €35 million ‘COVID-19 Stability Fund’ which will provide a level of support to qualifying organisations who are most in need and have seen their trading and/or fundraising income drop significantly during the crisis and a €5 million Philanthropy Fund.
Applications for the Stability fund will be open from Monday 11th May and will close on Wednesday 20th May at 5pm. The guidelines, further information about the scheme and how to apply and application forms (available from 11th May) are available on Pobal website here
On Thursday 2nd April, the Minister for Rural and Community Development, announced the Governments ‘Community Call’ to link local and national Government with the community and voluntary sectors. It aims to coordinate community activity, direct community assistance to where it is needed, and marshal the volunteering energy of the country while people are cocooning. Our COVID-19 Community Outreach Champions are working as part of this Government Initiative helping to fill the gaps in services and identifying the needs of people living alone who are cocooning. You can find your Local Champion on the map here
The Government Community Call Advice and Contact Information is available here
You can find your Local Authorities Helpline here.
Irish Rural Link are urging people to heed the new measures announced by An Taoiseach this evening, 27th March and to stay at home and asking neighbours of elderly and vulnerable people to phone them and ensure they are safe. Full press statement here
The Government announced yesterday, 24th March, new measures in relation to going outdoors during COVID-19 pandemic. Due to overcrowding of public parks, beaches, popular walking sites, playgrounds, many of these are now closed or there is an increase presence of Park Rangers and Gardai at these sites. It is still important to get out during self isolation, for both physical and mental health, but we must take responsibility for our own safety and the safety of others and maintain the recommended 2 metre distance from others. Leave No Trace have developed a set of guidelines to help people to get out and enjoy the outdoors while maintaining social distance. These include;
Plan Ahead – Check weather, bring proper clothing and footwear, water and food. Park and walk responsibly.
Expect Closures – Before leaving home, consider lack of usual facilities such as toilets, shops, cafes, restaurants.
Stay Home or Local – Unwell? Don’t go! Feeling well? Look for local trails, hidden gems, explore closer to home.
Be Considerate: Maintain social distancing throughout the day – at least 2 metres apart. There is plenty of space in the outdoors for everyone!
Time and Place: Find those hidden gems, avoid peak times, avoid difficult routes. Adhere to HSE guidelines.
Leave No Trace: Don’t rely on or add to already overburdened services. Bring your own rubbish home.
Be Dog Responsible: Keep dogs under control. Mind out for young wildlife. Pick up and bring home dog waste.