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We are delighted to announce that the 2021 County Monaghan Volunteer Awards are now opened for nominations.

The County Monaghan Volunteer Awards recognise, reward and celebrate the achievements of volunteers throughout Monaghan, this year we would like to pay particular attention to groups and individuals throughout the county, who have played key roles in supporting others throughout the ongoing COVID – 19 pandemic.

You can access the nomination in PDF form here: Co. Monaghan Volunteer Awards Nomination Form 2021 pdf

or submit online here:

Nomination Form Online

Dept of children equality disability integration and youth
Minister O’Gorman announces 2021 LGBTI+ Community Services Funding Call, 
Wednesday 7th of July 2021
  • €700,000 will be made available to support community services for LGBTI+ people.
  • Funding aims to promote inclusion, protect rights and to improve quality of life and wellbeing for LGBTI+ people in Ireland.
  • Grant scheme is open to applications from existing LGBTI+ non-government organisations and community organisations working with LGBTI+ people.
The Minister for Children, Disability, Equality and Integration, Roderic O’Gorman T.D., today announced that applications can now be made for funding from the LGBTI+ Community Services fund.
€700,000 is being made available to applicant groups, operating at national, regional and local level, to support community services and promote visibility and inclusion of LGBTI+ people.
The 2021 LGBTI+ Community Services Funding Call is an important element in supporting the implementation of the National LGBTI+ Inclusion Strategy, which was published on 28 November 2019, and complements the National LGBTI+ Youth Strategy published in June 2018.
Announcing the funding, Minister O’Gorman said “My Department aims to build a safer, fairer, more inclusive Ireland. The National LGBTI+ inclusion strategy is a major step forward for the LGBTI+ community – young and old, urban and rural. The continuation of this funding programme is a clear sign of my Department’s commitment to further improve access to services for LGBTI+ people, irrespective of their age or where they live.”

Key actions for the Department include maintaining the funding and capacity of LGBTI+ community services, as well as measures to ensure that community development infrastructure more broadly is both inclusive and welcoming to LGBTI+ people.

Minister O’Gorman added “Continuing to support the LGBTI+ community is a priority for my Department. The funding announced today follows last year’s successful funding call and will help improve quality of life for LGBTI+ people and ensure they are supported in realising their rights.”

Additional funding of €700,000 was secured in the Equality budgetary allocation for 2021 to support equality and LGBTI+ initiatives, bringing the total funding available to over €920,000 in 2021.
There are two streams of funding, and applications must be submitted electronically. Applications for funding will remain open until 3pm on Monday 26 July 2021. Groups can access a detailed guidance document and complete an online application form at the following links:

Scheme A –
Applications for Funding will be assessed according to the following criteria:
  • Strategic fit and achieving the goals of the Scheme, including how the proposed project would benefit LGBTI+ people in rural areas.
  • Strength of proposal, including how the planned activities will improve services and meet the current unmet needs of the LGBTI+ community.
  • Financial management and value for money
Issued by the Press and Communications Office at the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth.
Tel: 01 647 - 3153/3032

What ideas do you have for your area in County Monaghan?
During July and August, we are hosting an Idea Generation Summer Blitz as part of the Innovating Communities project.
The Summer Blitz is open to community groups, individuals, businesses and those in-between! All of the events are quick 30 minute online brainstorming sessions and are an opportunity for local people to bring forward ideas – wild and wonderful welcome 
The Summer Blitz is theme and area focused with workshops taking place from 7.30-8pm, see schedule below. To register for one or some, click on the hyperlinks below which lead you to each event’s Eventbrite page
Innovating Communities is a 2 year project that will deliver free facilitated training in 'Design Thinking' which is a Creative Problem Solving process. This process will be taught through a series of free Courses addressing ideas identified by local people. Your ideas might inform a new free Course which will support you act on the idea/s - check out the current active Courses at www.innovating.ie/training. Have a think about your ideas beforehand so you are prepared and ready to share and discuss with all attendees on your chosen evening/s!
If you have an interest in and ideas for your community and local area, these workshops and Innovating Communities is for you. And please share the above and attached with anyone you think would benefit.
If you wish to host an Idea Generation Workshop for another area or theme that we have not addressed, please get in touch with me. For more info, visit www.innovating.ie / contact me at Collette  / 087 176 1732.
Monaghan Idea Generation Summer Blitz Schedule MID Horizontal

Monaghan LEADER are hosting an Information Event on Tuesday 29th June at 3pm. All welcome.
This free afternoon event will inform attendees of the LEADER supports available, funding eligibility and exemptions, the application process and existing LEADER funded projects, along with an opportunity to hear from a recent recipient of the funding and to speak with Monaghan LEADER Development Officers about your project idea.
To attend, you can register at www.eventbrite.com/e/monaghan-leader-information-event-tickets-160737228377.
Alternatively, you can contact Monaghan LEADER at  / 087 176 0877 / 042 9749500.
About LEADER; Overall, the Monaghan LEADER programme provides funding for projects that promote social inclusion, develop the local economy through enterprise and tourism, and protect the environment. In April of this year, a new Transitional LEADER Programme 2021-2022 commenced, bridging the gap between the past LEADER 2014-2020 programme (ended 31st March 2021) and the start of the next programme in 2023.
Monaghan LEADER welcomes applications for this new Transitional LEADER programme. The Transitional programme is focused on building capacity within communities that have not received LEADER funding and will also continue to encourage entrepreneurship, job creation and rural communities to build on their existing strengths and assets, along with supporting projects that address the climate agenda and digital transformation.
Image of Billy Fox Memorial Park which received €39,243 LEADER aid.
Billy fox park
We look forward to seeing you there!

Small food businesses are being encouraged to apply for funding under the LEADER Food Initiative – a €5 million investment aimed at assisting businesses to deal with the challenges posed by Brexit and COVID-19.

Our Rural Future:

Ministers Humphreys, McConalogue, and Hackett announce final call for applications to the LEADER Food Initiative

Minister Humphreys said: “I recently launched the Transitional LEADER Programme for 2021 and 2022, underpinned by €70 million in funding. I am delighted to announce the final call for applications under LEADER Food Initiative. Commenting on the development, Minister McConalogue said: I am pleased that applicants with eligible projects under this call can be eligible for consideration for the increased maximum funding limit now increased from 50% to 75%. The €5m funding now made available will help support farmers and food enterprises to develop premium, sustainable outlets for their products on the Irish market.” Minister Hackett continued: "It is so important to help connect small food producers to the consumer. That’s why I am pleased that this funding is made available under the LEADER Food Initiative. The support will help local food enterprises to access advisory, investment, and marketing support for those who wish to diversify into new products and to build efficient, sustainable routes to market that help connect small food producers to the consumer."

Minister Mc Gonagle said "I am happy to announce that the final tranche of the €15m funding allocated by my Department for the LEADER Food Initiative is now being made available for this final call for applications for artisan, micro and small food enterprises engaged in the agri-food sector. Following on from my announcement last year on extending the measure into 2021, I am pleased that applicants with eligible projects under this call can be eligible for consideration for the increased maximum funding limit now increased from 50% to 75%. The €5m funding now made available will help support farmers and food enterprises to develop premium, sustainable outlets for their products on the Irish market.” Minister Mc Conalogue added: “I hope that the increased maximum rates of aid will encourage these food businesses, who have shown great resilience during the past year, to apply for this funding support."

Minister Hackett continued: "It is so important to help connect small food producers to the consumer. That’s why I am pleased that this funding is made available under the LEADER Food Initiative. The support will help local food enterprises to access advisory, investment, and marketing support for those who wish to diversify into new products and to build efficient, sustainable routes to market that help connect small food producers to the consumer." 

Full Press Release Here

Find out how the LEADER Programme can assist you by contacting the LEADER office on 042 9749500 or email

Please click links for Expression of Interest Form and Guidance Notes

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Applications are now open for the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme (ORIS)

MID welcomes expression of interest from groups interested in applying for this ORIS funding under Measure 1 which offers grant aid up to €20,000.

You can fill out EOI form here at; https://forms.gle/3M3M7vHjG3TgUwSd7 

Eligible Activities include, but are not limited to, small scale maintenance such as the upkeep, repair and development of trails, walkways, cycleways, greenways and blueways, recreational facilities at bogs, rivers, lakes and beaches, natural play areas that form part of a larger outdoor recreation project and the promotion and marketing of such infrastructure.

For more info and or an Expression of Interest form in Word format, please contact Aurelia at  

Closing date for completed Expressions of Interest is Friday 28th May 2021 @ 5pm

This is a competitive process and the number of applications under the fund are limited.

Join us for a free Innovating Communities Ballybay Ideas Generation Workshop for community groups, individuals and businesses in the Ballybay area. The event takes place on Tuesday 1st June @ 7pm via Google Meet, link to follow – register through the Eventbrite link to receive updates at www.eventbrite.ie/e/ballybay-idea-generation-workshop-innovating-communities-tickets-155782745385 

Let us get together to develop solutions to challenges you identify in your area!

Through the Innovating Communities project we can then assist your area by providing a free course to tackle these challenges using Design Thinking (the method we'll be teaching participants to create solutions) and ask you to put forward ideas based on local challenges and opportunities that you see in Ballybay and its surrounds.

For potential Challengers (participants), we'll describe the commitment of a 21 hour Sprint Course and the 42 hour Marathon Course and hope to focus your ideas into a Course related to the Challenges you see around you.

The event shouldn't take much longer than an hour so please get involved and let your ideas flow!

For more info, visit www.innovating.ie / contact Collette  / 087 176 1732

If you’re not from the Ballybay area and wish to host an Idea Generation Workshop in your local area, get in touch!


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Project approvals under the Transitional Programme will commence from 1st April 2021. The Programme will bridge the gap between EU LEADER programming periods. 

The Initial allocation of approx. €1.6k to support Monaghan-led rural development with a key focus on building capacity in communities.

The Main Priorities include: 

Supports to rural businesses seeking to reach new markets, expand, innovate and/or diversify in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and/or Brexit, with a particular emphasis on providing support to businesses in the food sector.

Community-based projects that seek to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Supports and capacity building for communities that have not previously received assistance under LEADER or other rural programmes.

Support for new and innovative projects in the areas of climate change, environmental protection and the green economy.

Maximising the potential of broadband and the digital economy in communities, including through skills development and building awareness and usage of available remote working facilities.

Projects that develop the concept of the Smart Village initiative to local area development

Find out more:  

For queries on the new Transitional LEADER programme please contact Marjan, Marianne or Rita on 042 9749500 or email us at 

Please click links for Expression of Interest Form  & EOI Guidance Notes 

All Expressions of Interest received will be assessed for eligibility for funding in line with the LEADER Operating Rules, Monaghan Local Development Strategy and the priorities for Transitional Funding. If your proposed project is eligible, you will be invited to submit a full project application. 

Announcing the details of the Transitional Programme, Minister Humphreys said:

“Since 1991, the LEADER Programme has played an important role in the development and enhancement of rural areas, by providing critical funding to rural economies, and supporting rural communities to implement a local-led ‘bottom-up’ approach to developing their own areas

With co-financing from the EU, LEADER has supported thousands of projects across Ireland. It has contributed to job creation, community development and environmental projects throughout the length and breadth of rural Ireland.

A new call for proposals under the LEADER Food Initiative will also be announced in 2021. This Initiative, which is jointly managed by my Department and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, will support small food producers to address emerging challenges, such as responding to the impact of Brexit and developing markets for their products.

The Transitional Programme will give local communities and enterprises an opportunity to respond to the emerging challenges for rural areas and to look ahead to issues that are likely to feature in the next EU programme.

It will allow the Local Development Companies to build capacity within communities who have not received LEADER funding to date, while also facilitating preparations for the next LEADER programme.”

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