€1.2m fund launched to help empower young people

€1.2m fund launched to help empower young people

The Engage & Educate Fund was created by law firm Mason Hayes & Curran LLP and Rethink Ireland, the Social Innovation Fund of Ireland, in partnership with the government. It backs innovative projects which support young people and adults from marginalised communities to access education.

PROJECTS in Cork that empower young people and adults through education are being invited to apply to a €1.2m fund which has been launched by Rethink Ireland.

The Engage & Educate Fund was created by law firm Mason Hayes & Curran LLP and Rethink Ireland, the Social Innovation Fund of Ireland, in partnership with the government. It backs innovative projects which support young people and adults from marginalised communities to access education.

“As a teacher I see the inequalities in our society every day and how education can empower individuals to lead their communities toward better and more sustainable lives,” Emer O’Neill, Múinteoir with RTÉ’s Home School Hub said.

“The last year of the Covid-19 pandemic showed us how vital school is for our kids.”

Since the fund was introduced, €450,000 has been invested in supporting 11 projects across 10 counties in Ireland with financial and mentoring support. As a result, these projects have reached 5,725 participants and mobilised 1,305 volunteers.

This second phase is now worth €1.2 million. In order to apply, the project must focus on enhancing educational attainment for young people and adults in one or more of the following groups — people experiencing poverty or socio-economic disadvantage, Traveller and Roma people, migrant people, (including people in need of international protection), people from minority ethnic communities and people with disabilities

“The Engage & Educate Fund is another terrific example of public private philanthropic partnership,” Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development and Charities at the Department of Rural and Community Development, Joe O’Brien TD, said.

“This fund is now open to applications from projects all over Ireland in marginalised and disadvantaged communities aiming to empower their members through education.”

Deirdre Mortell, CEO, Rethink Ireland also added: “Education is the silver bullet to empowering people.

“We are delighted to launch this second phase of our Engage & Educate Fund, with increased finance from Mason Hayes & Curran LLP and the government via the Dormant Accounts Fund. Never has this fund been more important as the Covid-19 pandemic has increased inequalities between people and communities.”

The fund is open for applications until 5pm on Tuesday, June 2. Further details are available on rethinkireland.ie.

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