The annual €90,000 Energia Meenadreen Wind Farm Fund in South Donegal is now open for applications.
Local community groups operating in the immediate vicinity of the wind farm near Leghowney and extending out to Donegal Town are eligible to apply.
The fund is entering its fifth year, having provided over 50 grants totalling more than €250,000 supporting a range of organisations and community projects.
The maximum amount of funding available to large-scale infrastructure projects has been increased to €60,000 over two years. This will apply where community groups can show they will offer a lasting legacy for the local community. Projects can include the renovation or building of community centres, playgrounds, sports facilities, walking tracks, projects that improve the local environment.
Peter Baillie, Managing Director of Energia Renewables, said: “Energia now owns and operates 15 onshore wind farms across the island of Ireland and next year we will be investing more than ever in our community benefit funds.
“We are committed to supporting the communities where we invest and recognise the challenge that many local groups face in accessing the funding they need.
“This year more than most we’ve recognised the role that these funds can play in supporting rural communities and building community resilience.”
The fund is administered by the Community Foundation for Ireland and prioritises projects which promote:
-Energy efficiency and sustainability
-Environmental or economic benefit
-Social cultural or sporting benefit
-Educational issues with a focus on sustainability.
Denise Charlton, Chief Executive of The Community Foundation for Ireland said: “Our mission is equality in thriving communities. We are proud to partner with Energia to deliver on their commitment to the communities in South Donegal. The provision of infrastructure is key if people of all ages are to have a future in rural areas. The type of projects which will be supported will help ensure that everyone can call on supports and services provided locally by vibrant and active local groups and organisations.
“We look forward to receiving applications which once again show vision, passion and energy.”
The closing date is Friday, October 22. Full details about the fund and how to apply can be found at www.communityfoundation.ie/grants/open-grants
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