Minister Dermot Ahern announces funding of €40,000 to Irish community organisations in South Africa and Zimbabwe
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Dermot Ahern T.D., has today announced funding of €40,000 to Irish community organisations in South Africa and Zimbabwe.
In announcing the grants the Minister said:
“I am delighted that Government financial support is now reaching Irish associations in South Africa and Zimbabwe for the first time.
Our strong commitment to our communities abroad is reflected in the high level of funding now available. This year, €12 million is being distributed in grants, which means that our support is now twelve-times the sum that was available when this Government came to office in 1997.
Irish community organisations in Britain, the United States and Australia continue to receive substantial funding. I am delighted that the additional allocation that I have secured is allowing us to extend, over time, the geographic reach of our financial support.
In the last year, for example, I have been happy to approve funding for the first time to Irish community organisations in Canada and Argentina. Today's announcement concerning Irish associations in South Africa and Zimbabwe represents a further welcome development.
We deeply appreciate the strong and unifying focal points which the Irish associations in South Africa and Zimbabwe provide for our community there, many of whom – including members of religious orders – live some very considerable distance apart from each other. Today's grants will help these Irish associations to sustain their valuable community support structures into the future.”
Note to editors:
The grants announced today by the Minister are as follows:
Cape Town Irish Association - €10,000
Durban Irish Society - €10,000
Mashonaland Irish Association, Harare - €15,000
Irish Association of Bulawayo - €5,000
Government funding for emigrant services continues to rise significantly. In 2006 a figure of €12 million has been allocated for emigrant services worldwide, compared to €8.27 million in 2005. This represents an increase of 45% on 2005.
A full list of grants approved to date in 2006 is available at: www.dfa.i
31 October 2006