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Dublin: 1°C Wednesday 12 May 2021

Nearly €3.5 million of funding for breakfast clubs and community schemes pulled in Dublin's north inner city

The money is intended to help disadvantaged areas.

Image: Shutterstock/wavebreakmedia

FUNDING FOR BREAKFAST clubs and community employment centres in Dublin’s north inner city has been pulled after the provider’s tender for funding was rejected.

These services are delivered through a Government-funded scheme known as the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP). This falls under the remit of the Department for Rural & Community Development.

Yesterday evening, it emerged that the tendering for the north inner city area had been rejected by the Local Community Development Committee – the Dublin City Council group which monitors SICAP.

Reasons for the refusal could not be confirmed by time of publication. However, informed sources told TheJournal.ie that it had been argued that the money was being spent on a concentrated area and was not spread evenly around the north inner city district.

Latest figures show that €840,000 was spent on SICAP schemes last year. The tendering process is four years – hence the figure of €3.36 million.

This now means that emergency funding will be needed to continue SICAP and keep the doors of after school clubs open.

A group in Dublin City Council know as the Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) manage SICAP at a local level.

The tendering process for SICAP was introduced two years ago. Many detractors had claimed that it was making the funding application scheme more cumbersome.

One source told us that “this was something that was just going to happen. The councillors in there were told that this wouldn’t work”.

Former Taoiseach Enda Kenny had made assurances that his Government would not abandon the north inner city in the immediate aftermath of gangland murders in the area last year.

He had promised an additional €1,000,000 package of investment, in sports facilities and local community and youth projects and €100,000 for supports for anti-drug related projects in the area.

A spokesman for the Department for Rural & Community Development said: “Contrary to what has been suggested, no services have been withdrawn. SICAP is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development. €847,000 was allocated for projects in inner city Dublin through SICAP in 2016.

“The LCDCs are the Contracting Authority for SICAP. LCDCs around the country manage SICAP at a local level and direct funding to programme implementers.

“They are also the key decision makers in terms of annual planning, monitoring and oversight.

“LCDCs are responsible for monitoring Programme Implementers’ compliance through financial management and performance monitoring and have responsibility for the bi-annual performance reviews and the annual planning process.

“The Department of Rural and Community Development allocated a further €2.5 million to support communities is the north east inner city through the RAPID programme earlier this month.”

Dublin City Council said it could not comment on the matter. 

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