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Carrigaline Planning Group to Showcase Vision

Writes Ciaran Dineen

Next week representatives from the Carrigaline My Town, My Plan group will feature at SECAD's online shared learning event, with some familiar faces set to take centre stage.

Over the past 12 months a number of community members from Carrigaline, Ballygarvan, Crosshaven and beyond have dedicated their time and effort to attend a series of information lectures relating to community development.

During each gathering, attendees were encouraged to explore their vision for Carrigaline, and to come together and agree on a few big ideas that they would like to see implemented in the future.

Carrigaline's Barry Cogan (Left) was one of those involved with the Carrigaline group

The programme identified 8 towns in the County that would go on to benefit from My Town, My plan. These included; Kinsale, Rosscarbery, Youghal, Cobh, Midleton, Skibbereen, Clonakility and Carrigaline.

The Hincks Centre for Entrepreneurship Excellence, part of the School of Business at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) designed and delivered the programme and funded through SECAD Partnership CLG. 

The face-to-face training and consultative sessions by expert facilitators began last September and as Covid-19 hit in mid-March, the April and May sessions moved online.  The programme comprised of 4 core topics, delivered by experts, on developing community projects/enterprises, moving from ideas to validation, legal structures/governance and strategic planning and were delivered in each town over 8 evening sessions.  In addition to the core topics, each town group selected 4 specialist topics most relevant to their town’s future development. Dr Helen McGuirk, Head of the Hincks Centre said; “We noticed one general theme across most towns and that is the idea of developing greenways/trails and parks, opening up new areas to be explored and enjoyed by locals and visitors. This is particularly pertinent with many Irish holidaymakers opting for a staycation this year due to Covid-19. The shared learning between the towns has been incredible and the Hincks Centre is delighted to have played a part in empowering these local communities.  It was all about the participants and stakeholders working together, thinking creatively, evaluating options and making collaborative decisions to develop clarity and vision for their individual town ideas”. Ciaran Dineen from Carrigaline remarked, “My Town, My Plan gave me the chance to share my thoughts and ambitions for the future of Carrigaline. By meeting people who shared an appetite and desire to make a real difference, My Town, My Plan has encouraged me to move forward and build upon the conversations we have had with the information and knowledge around community development that has been provided. It has been a fantastic experience”. This week towns in West Cork showcased their work at an online event including speakers from around the country discussing topics such as social enterprise, retail in towns and tourism. On 7th October at 7pm, the South Cork towns (Carrigaline, Cobh, Midleton and Youghal) will share their experiences and will also introduce the next phase of support that SECAD is offering through the LEADER 2014-2020 Programme.

If you would like to register for the free online event, copy the link below!

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