Cork projects awarded €200,000 for 'outstanding' work

Cork projects awarded €200,000 for 'outstanding' work

Claire Mackey, Gateway to Inclusion Project Coordinator at Nasc; Garry Fitzpatrick, Lead Project Coordinator for Refill Ireland; and Noreen Hegarty, General Manager of NCE Outreach pictured with Paula Cogan, President of Cork Chamber and Conor Healy, CEO of Cork Chamber pictured with Sustainable Cork signage made from recycled materials by ReCreate. Picture Darragh Kane

Three “outstanding” Cork projects which promote sustainability, community inclusion and employment have been awarded supports to the value of €200,000.

They received funding from the Sustainable Cork Fund, which has been created by Rethink in partnership with Cork Chamber of Commerce and the Department of Rural and Community Development.

The recipients of the funds include Nasc’s Gateway to Inclusion project, which provides support to female migrants and refugees to pursue education and employment opportunities, along with NCE Outreach who offer training and further education to people in Cork engaged in post-addiction treatment programmes and probation services.

In addition, the funding has been awarded to Refill.ie, which provides innovative initiatives to help eradicate single-use plastic water bottles across both Cork city and county. The three organisations were among 66 who applied for the fund, which was created to mark Cork Chamber of Commerce’s 200-year anniversary. After an extensive fundraising campaign, the money raised by Cork Chamber and its members was matched by the Department through the Dormant Accounts Fund, which brought the total figure for the Sustainable Cork Fund up to €200,000.

Speaking on the announcement, President of Cork Chamber, Paula Cogan thanked the people of Cork for their support and contribution to the fund.

“When we initiated the call-to-action across the business community as part of the Chamber 200 celebrations in 2019 we never expected such a response. Individuals and businesses across Cork pledged to the fund, showing what a strong business community can achieve together,” she said.

“This fund was the cornerstone of our anniversary programme, as we were determined to create a legacy for Cork. We believe it will have a lasting impact on our community and it will be truly transformational for the awardees. Their work shows us all what fresh thinking, creativity, and resilience can achieve and what is being done to make Cork a better place.”

Commenting on the achievement of the three projects, Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys noted the wonderful work undertaken by the projects.

“It is so important that we celebrate those organisations and projects that share our commitment to sustainability through environmental, social and economic resilience. The outstanding projects showcase the ways that communities are making a difference,” she said.

“We are delighted to announce our three awardees, all of whom exemplify how you can meaningfully shape a more inclusive future," said Board Director at Rethink Ireland, Caroline O’Driscoll.

"It has never been more important for us all to think and act sustainably and inclusively, and Nasc, Refill.ie and NCE Outreach are making great strides in this area. This much-deserved recognition will allow them to continue their innovative work, building to a better future," she added.

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