‘Putting People First’ – Action Programme for Effective Local Government, set out reforms to improve the delivery of services for the citizen, deliver greater efficiency and effectiveness and give local government a more central role in local and community development. It represented a significant change in government policy in relation to local government and seeks to place local government as the main vehicle of governance and public service at local level – leading economic, social and community development, delivering efficient and good value services, and representing citizens and local communities effectively and accountably.
The Local Government Reform Act 2014, enacted on 27 January 2014, gave legislative effect to the commitments in ‘Putting People First’, including the establishment of Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) in each local authority administrative area.
The Carlow Local Community Development Committee was established on the 30th June 2014.
The Guiding Principles of the LCDC are;
- A developmental “bottom up” approach
- A clear focus on social inclusion
- Promotion of enterprise and employment development
- Voluntary activity and active citizenship
- Harnessing of existing community infrastructure
- Achieving value for money
- Best use of available resources
- Primary responsibility for co-ordination, planning and oversight of local development spend.
- Develop, coordinate and implement a coherent and integrated approach to local community development in County Carlow. It will do this by bringing together local authority members and officials, state agencies and people actively working with local development, community development, and economic, cultural and environmental organisations to implement a joined-up, cross-sectoral approach to local community development programming. LCDCs will, therefore, draw on the expertise and experience of public and private actors within the Council area to provide effective and efficient services to citizens and communities of County Carlow, in particular those most in need of those services.
- Meaningful citizen and community engagement.
- Efficient administration of local programmes.
- Pursue opportunities for additional funding resources.
Functions of the LCDC are
- To prepare, adopt, implement, monitor and review the community elements of a 6 year Local Economic and Community Plan.
- To consider and adopt a statement of the economic elements of the Local Economic and Community Plan.
- To improve the co-ordination of publicly funded programmes including the Local Community Development Programme Rural Development Programme (LEADER) and Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP).
- Oversight of local and community development programmes
- Avoidance of duplication.
- To prepare an annual report on the performance of its functions.
The LCDC is a committee of the Council but independent in the performance of its functions.
The LCDC consists of 19 members both statutory and non-statutory including four elected members. The following members resigned from the committee in 2018, Jules Michael (Civic Society), Eileen Doyle (PPN Social Inclusion), Cynthia Deane (Statutory Interests) and Anne Marie Lanigan (Statutory Interests).
These members were replaced by Eilish Langton (Civic Society), John Murphy (PPN Social Inclusion), Sarah Barron (Statutory Interests) and Joan-Ita Murphy (Statutory Interests) respectively.
Carlow LCDC Members are:
|Local Government||Michael Doran
Members of Carlow County Council
Head of Enterprise
|Department of Employment Affairs & Social Protection
Kilkenny/Carlow Education & Training Board
Health Service Executive
|Non Statutory Interests|
|Sector Members Name Organisation|
|Local & Community Development||Thomas Kelly
|Drumphea Cemetery Committee (Community and Voluntary PPN Rep)
Hacketstown Community Group (Community and Voluntary PPN Rep)
Bagenalstown Family Resource Centre(Social Inclusion PPN Rep)
BEAM, Bagenalstown (Social Inclusion PPN Rep)
An Táisce (Environmental College PPN Rep)
|Social Economic and Community Interests||Karl Duffy
|Carlow County Development Partnership CLG.
Carlow Chamber (Business Employer)
|Agricultural / Farming
Arts & Culture – Civic Society
The LCDC had programme oversight and programme management in respect of the following activities:
- Local Economic and Community Plan (LECP)
- Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP)
- Rural Development Programme (LEADER)
- Community Enhancement Programme
Carlow Local Economic and Community Plan
The purpose of the Local Economic and Community Plan (LECP) is to set out, for a six-year period, the objectives and actions needed to promote and support the economic development and the local and community development of County Carlow. These actions will be agreed and implemented both by Carlow County Council, Carlow Local Community Development Committee and in partnership with other economic and community development stakeholders.
The Community and Economic elements of the Plan set out to promote synergy, collaboration, engagement, support and leadership by working with stakeholders to enhance the wellbeing of all our communities, so that County Carlow is a sustainable and vibrant place to live, visit, invest and work in.
Strategic high-level goals
- Build thriving, resilient, sustainable and inclusive communities;
- Strengthen and promote a thriving and sustainable enterprise culture in County Carlow;
- Ensure access to education and skills for all members of communities;
- Optimise the tourism product and message;
- Provide the required infrastructure for the County;
- Maximise external investment into Carlow
The plan is designed to complement the work already happening on the ground and avoid duplication of resources.
Link to plan (see attached)
Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP)
The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) is the successor programme to the Local Community Development Programme. SICAP is a local social inclusion programme focussed on the most marginalised in Irish Society.
To improve the life chances and opportunities of those who are marginalised in society, living in poverty and unemployment, through community development approaches, targeting supports and interagency collaboration where the values of inclusion are promoted, and human rights are respected.
To reduce poverty, promote social inclusion and equality through local, regional and national engagement and collaboration.
SICAP has three goals:
- To support and resource disadvantaged communities and marginalised target groups to engage with relevant local and national stakeholders in identifying and addressing social exclusion and equality issues.
- To support individuals and marginalised target groups experiencing educational disadvantage so they can participate fully, engage with and progress through life-long learning opportunities through the use of community development approaches.
- To engage with marginalised target groups/individuals and residents of disadvantaged communities who are unemployed but who do not fall within mainstream employment service provision, or who are referred to SICAP, to move them closer to the labour market and improve work readiness and support them in accessing employment and self-employment and creating social enterprise opportunities.
SICAP Target Groups
The target groups are:
- Children and Families from disadvantaged areas;
- Lone parents;
- New Communities (including Refugees/Asylum Seekers);
- People living in Disadvantaged Communities;
- People with Disabilities;
- The Unemployed (including those not on the live register);
- Low Income Workers/Households;
- Young unemployed people from disadvantaged areas;
- NEETs-Young People aged 15-24 years who are not in employment, education or training.
2018 saw the beginning of the new SICAP Programme covering the period of 2018 to 2022. The LCDC is the contracting authority and Carlow County Development Partnership is the Programme Implementer. County Carlow is one Lot for the purposes of this programme. The budget for 2018 was €547,157 and over the period of the programme funding of €2,682,140 will be spent on the programme.
Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020 (LEADER)
(Logos are LEADER, European-Structural and Investment Funds, EUESF and Government of Ireland)
Since its launch in 1991, LEADER has provided rural communities across the European Union with the resources to enable local partners to actively engage and direct the local development of their area, through community-led local development. In Ireland, under the LEADER Programme for 2014-2020, a budget of €250 million in grant aid is being provided to support rural communities and local businesses.
. The LEADER Programme is administered at a local level by 29 Local Action Groups (LAGs) who operate on administrative or county boundaries and are made up of local representatives from the community, public and private sector. Carlow LCDC is the LAG with Carlow County Development Partnership as the Implementing Partner and Carlow County Council is the Financial Partner. The Carlow LEADER Programme was awarded €6,416,803.43m.
Each LAG is responsible for selecting and awarding LEADER funding to projects within their geographical area. A project must be aligned with the priorities of the Local Development Strategy (LDS). The LDS is a 5-year plan that was developed by the LAG, in conjunction with the the rural community, to support the sustainable development of the area. Grant aid is provided to projects under the following priorities/themes:
Economic Development, Enterprise Development and Job Creation
Basic Services targeted at hard to reach communities
Protection and sustainable use of water resources
Link to Carlow LDS (see attached)
Community Enhancement Programme 2018
The Community Enhancement Programme (CEP) is a new programme introduced in 2018. It built on and replaced the Communities Facilities Scheme and the recast RAPID programme, which launched in 2017. The CEP provides capital funding to communities across County Carlow to enhance facilities in disadvantaged areas.
The CEP is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development and administered by the Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) in each Local Authority area.