The future of Donegal Communities in Crisis
Over the last three decades, Donegal Local Development Company Ltd. (DLDC) and local voluntary community groups in Donegal have worked successfully together to combat disadvantage through the delivery of a variety of programmes.
Through this partnership, DLDC has provided direct assistance that has;
- Enabled communities to develop facilities and local development programmes
- Helped and provided employment to the long-term unemployed
- Combated social exclusion and poverty
- Assisted business’s and people in creating jobs and enterprise in their local community
- Provided training and educational programmes to up-skill individuals and community groups
Under the existing structure numerous local development programmes have been delivered throughout the county. In almost every village and town throughout Donegal, communities continue to avail of one or more of the following programmes in partnership with Donegal Local Development Company: Rural Social Scheme, Tús, Local and Community Development Programme inclusive of Back to Work Enterprise Scheme, Donegal Volunteer Centre, Leader/RDP, The Rural Recreational Walks Programme, CE Childcare Programme, Job Club and Jobs Initiative.
The changes proposed by Government under the Alignment process are likely to put DLDC’s work under the control of a Donegal County Council-led committee or to private contractors with profit rather than community driven aims. This would have serious consequences for citizens and communities across the DLDC catchment area. As a direct result of these proposed changes, there are now grave concerns that the existing link between the community and Local Development Companies like DLDC could be severed forever, with the loss of skills and expertise built up over many years. This scenario would have a significant negative impact on your local community.
It is now time for your community to consider if this proposed new structure will be the most effective way to deliver programmes based on local issues and local needs. As such, the Board and staff of Donegal Local Development Company, invite you to a public meeting on Tuesday 13th May 2014 in the Finn Valley Centre commencing at 7.00pm to 8.15pm.
The aim of this meeting is to inform communities and citizens about how the proposed changes might impact on them and to consider how the services offered by DLDC can continue to be supported and retained.
A strong show of public support for DLDC and community-led development in Donegal is needed at this time. All welcome and DLDC greatly appreciate your support at this critical time.