Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots MLA recently met a number of rural community organisations which have received assistance from County Down Rural Community Network, through the Marginalised Minority Communities (MMC) in Rural Border Areas measure of DAERA’s Rural Community Development Support Service Programme.
Speaking in Bessbrook Town Hall, where he met representatives from Bessbrook Institute, Kingsmills Youth Group and the Fews Community Group, the Minister said: “The Department’s Rural Community Development Support Service has played a pivotal role in helping rural community groups gain the confidence and capacity to help improve the quality of life for residents in their areas. This was particularly evident during the last 12 months when these groups were involved in co-ordinating the public sector response to the Covid-19 Emergency Response Plan and local frontline delivery of supplies and services to those most in need.
“This work also identified a disparity in the capacity of some rural groups. While many are strong and confident and provide a wide range of services to their local community, in some areas, particularly rural border areas where there are pockets of minority communities, the capacity is weaker. The Marginalised Minority Communities in Rural Border Areas measure of DAERA’s Rural Community Development Support Service seeks to address this by providing tailored support to build capacity in these areas and help these groups play a full and active role in helping their communities grow and flourish’.
For more information on the MMC programme in the South Armagh / South Down areas, contact County Down Rural Community Network firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the CDRCN office 028 4461 2311.