Legendary GAA commentator to launch LEADER Report

Legendary GAA commentator and local community champion, Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh, will launch a new report outlining the significant impact Kilkenny LEADER Partnership has had in the region.

The 85-year-old Dingle native will launch Kilkenny LEADER Partnership’s ‘End of Programme Report 2009-2015’ this friday, January 29 at 2pm in the Parade Tower at Kilkenny Castle.

The group, which is bidding to continue its role and administer the next tranche of funding, has had a major impact on rural life across Kilkenny for the past 25 years.

KLP distributed in excess of €11m in grant aid between 2009 and 2015, funding almost 300 separate projects of all sizes, helping create 91 sustainable jobs.

KLP’s work on social inclusion programmes and employment supports has assisted thousands of individuals and it has been active in supporting projects and sectors as far-reaching as renewable energy, tourism, broadband and heritage.

Speaking ahead of the launch, Mr Ó Muircheartaigh said: “People all over the country are full of praise for LEADER and the practical work it has done in and for communities right around the country.

“Of all the schemes introduced locally, it has been an outstanding example of the good that can be done for communities by communities. I would be very sorry to see the structure changed and the project administered in the future by others with no ties with rural Ireland.”

KLP Chairman, Denis Drennan, said KLP has made a massive difference by assisting communities over the past 25 years and says they are anxious to continue that invaluable work in administering the next phase of the programme.

Job creation

“Over the past 6 years we helped create 91 sustainable jobs within the county, supported 73 communities, assisted 61 tourism and trail projects as well as 57 youth projects.

“We’ve supported 16 heritage programmes, 10 renewable energy initiatives and 2,872 individuals. Across this region we also supported 686 enterprises of all shapes and sizes.

“We know what works and what doesn’t and we feel we are ideally positioned as a non-profit, independent, community-led, local organisation, with representation from 200 plus communities, groups and clubs, to continue this invaluable, grassroots work.”