City boost - £10m fund on the way

The Peace Bridge, Derry. (DER3413PG003)
The Peace Bridge, Derry. (DER3413PG003)

Derry has been awarded a cash boost of almost £10 million to fund a range of community development and employment projects across the city.

The money comes from the Social Investment Fund and has been allocated to the city by the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM)

£4.5 million will be used to build new sports pitches and £1.75 millon will be used for new play facilities in communities throughout the city.

£3.3 million will go to delivering community employment projects for young people, the long-term unemployed and those in low wage jobs.

The chairperson of the Social Investment Fund’s Derry steering group, Noel McCartney, said he is “delighted” with the funding package and described it as a major boost which would help thousands of people.

“It will allow us to provide £4.5 million for pitches and £1.75 million for Multi Use Games Areas (MUGA) and play facilities in the most deprived areas of the city.

“It will also allow us to deliver a community work programme throughout the whole city which will cost £3.3 million. The priority groups will be young people not in education or training schemes, recently unemployed 18-24 year-olds, long term unemployed, people currently working in minimum wage employment, economically inactive, people with little or no qualifications, and those in neighbourhood renewal areas,” he said.

Mr McCartney said the work programme will train up to 200 people in a range of areas, including construction.

“I hope that we will be delivering projects on the ground by early 2014” he said.

(See page 7 for more.)