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Begin Together Fund Launched

With local community groups quickly forming here in the battle against the spread of Covid-19, funding is now being made available to those helping to keep their neighbourhood on their feet.

With €3m invested, Bank Of Ireland have announced their Begin Together Fund, which will provide up to €5,000 to over 100 local groups.

The fund will cover those offering financial support as well as physical and wellbeing in their communities.

Begin Together is an all-island initiative with three strands – the Begin Together Fund, the Begin Together Awards and Begin Together Colleagues. Each strand has a specific purpose and combined will deliver a significant positive impact on communities across Ireland.

The Begin Together Fund (€500,000 per annum) will provide funding of up to €5,000 to over 100 local groups to support financial, physical and mental wellbeing projects in communities across the island. The Bank is working with The Community Foundation for Ireland, which will administer the fund, and a number of expert partners – the Society of St Vincent de Paul, Sport Ireland, Action Mental Health and Sport NI – who have supported the development of the fund and will assist in shortlisting applicants for funding.

The Begin Together Awards (€200,000 per annum) will support the great work done by those striving to improve their communities and empower local economies. Working with local authorities across Ireland and Northern Ireland, the Begin Together Awards will stimulate economic development while celebrating local economic success.

Begin Together Colleagues (€300,000 per annum) is designed to support the voluntary efforts of colleagues to support local projects. Up to €5,000 will be awarded to local charities and community groups working to improve financial, physical and mental wellbeing.

Maria Coleman, head of Bank of Ireland for County Wicklow, said, “I encourage community groups in Wicklow to apply to our Begin Together Fund. As a leading lender in Ireland, we are supporting families and businesses across the islandnorth, south, east and west. The Begin Together initiative will further enable communities to thrive, and make a tangible positive impact on the communities where we live and work.

“The power of community in Ireland north and south is impressive. When we come together to do something we can really make a difference. At Bank of Ireland, we’re proud to support communities develop their financial, physical and mental wellbeing over the coming years.”

The Begin Together Fund is now open for applications right over here. And you can find out about recent Greystones community groups here.