Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, and Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development and Charities, Joe O’Brien TD, have announced €650,000 in funding for library supports for marginalised, socially excluded and disadvantaged communities.
The funding, under the Dormant Accounts Action Plan, is designed to assist libraries in reaching out to older people, the unemployed and other marginalised, socially excluded and disadvantaged groups.
Announcing the funding, Minister Humphreys said, “I am delighted today to be allocating €650,000 in this funding to libraries across the country. Our libraries have responded magnificently to the challenges presented by the pandemic and continued to provide services throughout the past 16 months.”
“This funding will help them to reach out and engage further with the communities they serve. The kind of programmes being funded through this initiative will benefits thousands of library users, young and old.”
Commenting on the funding, Minister O’Brien said, “I am delighted to approve these projects under the 2021 Dormant Accounts Action Plan. The projects are diverse in nature and target a multiplicity of groups including Travellers, New Irish, residents of Direct Provision Centres, the elderly who have experienced isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“There is also funding for groups working to provide autism supports, working with hearing and visually impaired communities, and people with learning differences such as dyslexia. This funding package will build on the excellent projects which were delivered last year and also helps our public libraries to foster community well-being and build community cohesion in their role as community hubs.”
The funding for library supports for the marginalised will provide:
- €450,000 for events and programmes which reaches out to marginalised, socially excluded and disadvantaged communities.
- €200,000 for the provision of digital equity and sensory equipment.
Minister O’Brien added, “I am particularly pleased that this funding supports the installation of equipment in public libraries which will improve accessibility for people with a disability, sensory needs, autism, and older members of our community. Our public libraries are welcoming and inclusive spaces and it is important that everybody can avail of the services that they provide.”
The Ministers also thanked the local authorities and the library staff for their ongoing commitment and support to the public library service.