Scheme aims to reduce sectarianism

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AN innovative new development programme aimed at community, voluntary, sporting and educational organisations which have not yet engaged with the Peace 3 programme has been launched.

Denise O’Hare, Project Manager for the programme said: “The Southern Peace 3 Cluster has always been anxious to ensure that any organisation which believes it can make a genuine contribution to building peace in our community should be supported. The Cluster has been engaged with many such organisations but accepts there are still organisations which have not so far been successful in securing grant aid from the Peace 3 Programme. We are therefore launching a special initiative targeting especially groups which have not yet received funding from the Peace 3 Programme.”

She continued “ The Southern Peace 3 Cluster’s new programme will offer community, voluntary, sporting and educational organisations the opportunity to apply for grant aid of up to £3,000 for projects which show they can change people’s attitudes leading to increased respect and trust and understanding between and within communities or reduce sectarianism and/or racism in the community or help to build a shared vision of an interdependent and fair society.

“We welcome new and creative ideas. To help deliver the programme the Cluster has appointed Mentor Economic Developments Limited which will raise awareness of the new programme, provide support to groups to generate new ideas and make funding applications and offer groups training in the skills needed to deliver their projects successfully.”

Frank Dolaghan of Mentor added: “To ensure organisations fully understand what the new programme is about and how to apply successfully we have organised a series of Information sessions in each of the Cluster’s four Council areas and we hope as many organisations as possible will attend. Each session runs from 7.30pm to 8.30pm. In Craigavon the sessions will run as follows:

Town Hall Lurgan on February 8; Portadown Town Hall on February 9 and Craigavon Golf and Ski Centre, February 10.

Anyone who needs further information can phone 3026 1229 or 07740 823 713 or email mentorecon@btclick.com.

The scheme has been launched under Priority 1, Theme 1 of the EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland (2007-2013).