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Minister announces grants for seven Irish based organisations under the Emigrant Support Programme

Irish abroad, Press Releases, Ireland, Great Britain, 2010

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Micheál Martin, T.D., has approved funding of €728,000 for seven Irish based organisations which assist emigrants or promote the development of greater engagement between Ireland and the global Irish.

Announcing the grants from the Emigrant Support Programme, which is managed by the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Minister said:

“The allocation of such significant funding is a clear demonstration of the Government’s strong continued commitment to supporting our communities abroad and those organisations in Ireland that provide assistance to returning or departing emigrants.”

The Safe Home Programme, which enables elderly Irish emigrants to return to live in Ireland, has received €255,000. This brings to €1.57 million the amount given to Safe Home under the Emigrant Support Programme since 2004. The Government is pleased to continue the relationship with this organisation, which provides such a valuable service to elderly Irish emigrants.

The Maynooth office of the Irish Council for Prisoners Overseas received €96,919 to continue their advocacy and visitation programme for Irish citizens incarcerated outside of Britain or Ireland. The ICPO works with several local organisations, such as the Immigration Centres in the United States to provide advice, support and assistance to almost 600 prisoners each year.

For the third year, the Emigrant Support Programme has provided 50% funding to the FAI’s UK based Welfare Officer. Speaking about this project Minister Martin said: “I have been pleased to continue the partnership with the FAI to fund this project. The UK based welfare officer has been providing ongoing guidance and support to young footballers and their parents, and working progressively with clubs and relevant agencies to ensure young players’ welfare and education needs are addressed.”

In addition to the organisations which provide welfare services, funding has also been made available to a number of cultural and heritage organisations. The Glór na nGael Global Gaeilge competition has received €39,000. This competition encourages Gaeilgeoirí from across the world to continue learning, teaching and sharing the Irish language.

Two further grants were awarded to Gateway Ireland and the South East Galway Diaspora Project. These new initiatives were both born out of the discussions at the Global Irish Economic Forum in Farmleigh last September; €23,000 and €56,700 has been approved to the respective projects.

Note to Editor:

The Department of Foreign Affairs provides financial support through its Emigrant Support Programme to organisations which are engaged in the delivery of services to members of Irish communities overseas.

The majority of funding from the Emigrant Support Programme goes to support organisations which provide welfare information and advisory services to Irish citizens living abroad, particularly those who are most vulnerable and marginalised, including the elderly. In recent years, the Programme has expanded to support capital, community and heritage projects which foster a greater sense of identity and belonging within Irish communities and strengthen their links with Ireland.

List of Irish organisations in receipt of funding:

Organisation Grant Amount
Safe Home €255,000
Crosscare Migrant Project €171,139
Irish Council for Prisoners Overseas €96,919

SE Galway Diaspora Project/Ireland

Reaching Out

€56,700
Football Association of Ireland €42,000
Glór na Gael €39,000
Gateway Ireland €23,000