DECLARATION OF SUPPORT FOR IRISH LOCAL DEVELOPMENT COMPANIES


We wish to support the continuation of the role of the 50 existing, experienced Local Development Companies in Ireland as;


1. The designated organisation to design and deliver our Local Development Strategies to be submitted to the Irish Government for budgets under the LEADER and Local Community (& Activation) Development Programmes 2014-2020


2. The designated contract holder (EU ‘Local Action Group’ Status) for the above named funds and for a range of other related funding streams


3. The decision maker for all funds assigned to the Local Development Companies to be invested in local communities, enterprises and initiatives based on their Integrated Local Development Strategies.


In this critical time of economic transition and weakening social cohesion, we believe that job creation and the protection of employment,developing innovative practices to support entrepreneurship, small local business and innovative joint ventures, engaging positively with people without meaningful employment, and developing the capacity of our communities to work inclusively, are essential factors in the seeking to achieve a sustainable, dynamic, caring future.


We acknowledge the role that Local (Partnership) Development Companies play in the delivery of these objectives through their local, bottom-up decision making structures, their skilled and knowledgeable staff, enabling communities to address participation, inclusion and challenges in terms of providing effective services, and their ability to forge effective long-term relationships with a range of public and private stakeholders to create an independent, trusted local platform of support for a range of beneficiaries.


You can find out more about what these changes will mean by visiting; www.ildn.ie/news

Discussion

  • Brendan O´Keeffe Local development companies are essential for Ireland´s economic recovery and are key to ensuring that we pursue a model of economic development that is more balanced, fairer and more sustainable. Local Development Companies are engines of volunteerism, and have enabled communities to make real and positive changes, thereby improving quality of life, generating new economic activities, providing new services and protecting the environment. The lessons from the demise of the celtic tiger teach us that economic prosperity and social progress do not derive from an unregulated free market or reigniting the property market, but need to be driven and directed from the bottom-up, and local development companies are essentail in this respect. Moreover, local development companies are the bedrock of participative democracy in Ireland, and serve to engage people in local decision-making in ways that the state apparatus cannot do. Therefore, the present model must be retained, but furthermore, it needs to be strengthened so that LAGs / Partnerships have greater flexibility, can be more innovative and can respond more readily to local needs and potential, rather than centralised dictats. Their excellent value for money and the track record of LAGs in creating jobs, fostering enterprise, supporting communities, enabling people and promoting social inclusion is unrivaled. Moreover, their openess and transparency offer models that others ought to replicate.

  • Michael Healy-Rae It is imperative that the work of the Local development Companies in empowering and encouraging their communities to look at the best ways to developed with the interest of the wider community at hearth. This can only be achieved with the trust established with the bottom up approach that has served rural Ireland well for the past 20 years. This must be protected as now more that ever there are more and more communities who feel left behind and forgotten about, only for the work of Local Dev and the many programs they deliver which works to achieve social inclusion for all.

  • Don Colbert Local Development Companies (LDCs) have been quietly supporting the economic and social development of communities for decades. Unlike government agencies, LDCs are governed by local community groups and activists and staffed by people who are professionals in a variety of fields such as Heritage, Environment, Tourism, Community and Rural Development, Economic and Enterprise Development to name but a few.
    LDCs support those who are unemployed, under-employed, minority groups including ethnic groups, small and micro enterprises, estate groups, provide targeted training programmes where the need has been identified in local areas, local tourism projects, ...............the list is too long to keep going.
    Because of their experience and structure, LDCs continue to be the best positioned organisations to administer government and EU funding in the most efficient way. However, recent changes proposed by government, threatens to change this and LDCs may become fragmented with much of the funding they used to provide being diverted to local government and elsewhere.
    Please sign the petition to support your Local Development Company and help prevent these proposed changes from being implemented.

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Petition highlights

  • As a former Director of the Office for Social Inclusion I can testify to the excellent, innovative services provided by these development companies and the major contribution they are making to social inclusion
  • Local development companies are essential for Ireland´s economic recovery and are key to ensuring that we pursue a model of economic development that is more balanced, fairer and more sustainable. Local Development Companies are engines of volunteerism, and have enabled communities to make real and positive changes, thereby improving quality of life, generating new economic activities, providing new services and protecting the environment. The lessons from the demise of the celtic tiger teach us that economic prosperity and social progress do not derive from an unregulated free market or reigniting the property market, but need to be driven and directed from the bottom-up, and local development companies are essentail in this respect. Moreover, local development companies are the bedrock of participative democracy in Ireland, and serve to engage people in local decision-making in ways that the state apparatus cannot do. Therefore, the present model must be retained, but furthermore, it needs to be strengthened so that LAGs / Partnerships have greater flexibility, can be more innovative and can respond more readily to local needs and potential, rather than centralised dictats. Their excellent value for money and the track record of LAGs in creating jobs, fostering enterprise, supporting communities, enabling people and promoting social inclusion is unrivaled. Moreover, their openess and transparency offer models that others ought to replicate.