Over £200,000 has been awarded to two Derry projects aiming to help young people develop skills and gain employment.
The funding has been allocated by the International Fund for Ireland.
A grant of £100,049 has been secured by Creggan Enterprises Ltd for a one-year project, entitled Lifehack. This will engage 20 young people aged between 16 and 25 who have left education with no or low qualifications, or who left the education system early and who face a range of challenges in life.
Operating in the Creggan, Brandywell and Bogside areas of the city, the project aims to improve individual situations through a range of tailored activities including accredited and non-accredited training.
St Columb’s Park Reconciliation Trust meanwhile have been awarded £112,530 for a one-year project called ‘How We Tell our Story’.
The initiative aims to build the capacity of marginalised young people through the development of life skills, thinking skills and confidence to enable them to access improved opportunities through learning, leadership and employment.
The projects are among 22 identified across Ireland by the International Fund for Ireland to receive a share of £2.6m in funding.
Commenting on the announcement Dr Adrian Johnston, Chairman of the International Fund for Ireland, said: “For more than 30 years, support from the Fund has helped reduce tensions and promote positive transformation during periods of social and political uncertainty. The Fund is focused on equipping communities, and young people in particular, with the means to resist and disrupt division and disaffection.
“We are pleased to award financial assistance to 22 projects and commend them for their willingness to take risks to support individuals and communities in challenging environments.
“Ground-breaking projects, like these 22, have been successful in tackling underlying causes of youth involvement in anti-social behaviour and the corrosive influence of sectarianism. We know there are risks that still need to be taken for a lasting peace and the quality of our interventions has never been more evident.”
The Chairman took the opportunity to thank the international donors to the Fund for their continued support – the European Union and the Governments of the United States of America, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
Further information about all the beneficiaries from the International Fund for Ireland’s latest funding package is available at the International Fund for Ireland’s website: www.internationalfundforireland.com
The International Fund for Ireland is an independent, international organisation established by the Irish and British Governments in 1986. The Fund’s main objectives are to promote economic and social advance and encourage contact, dialogue and reconciliation between Unionists and Nationalists throughout Ireland.
Since its inception, the Fund has committed more than £719m/€904m to a wide variety of projects in Northern Ireland and the southern border counties of Ireland. Developing and funding initiatives that tackle segregation and promote integration to build a lasting peace in Northern Ireland and the southern border counties is a key priority for the Fund.