Sports organisations in Laois are to benefit to the tune of €112,370.23 of funding to help them battle the effects of Covid-19.
€46,570.23 has been allocated to Laois Sports Partnership under the Laois Sports Partnership Small Grant Scheme. This money will subsequently be spread among 35 Laois clubs.
These clubs are a mixture of GAA, soccer, rugby, hockey, basketball, archery, gymnastics, athletics, badminton and boxing with the list of recipients posted in full below.
While €65,800 has been allocated to Laois Sports Partnership under the Local Sports Partnerships & Participation Sports Innovation Projects.
Fine Gael TD Charlie Flanagan welcomed the funding and called it ‘unprecedented’.
He said: “I am delighted that an unprecedented funding package of 85 million has been put in place for the Irish sport sector, which will help local groups in Laois & Offaly in what has been a difficult year with much activity stalled due to Covid-19.
“The funding being allocated by Sport Ireland will address the existential threat to National Governing Bodies and their club networks, and local sports organisations in the constituency.
“Through the Local Sports Partnership Small Grant Scheme, thirty-five clubs in Laois will be allocated funding of €46,570 and forty four clubs in Offaly will be allocated funding of €47,995.
“This scheme provides an additional mechanism to support community groups and clubs who may not be affiliated to a national organisation or but provide a vital local service.
“The primary aim of the grants is to cover the costs associated with implementing Covid-19 hygiene and social distancing protocols.
“A further €65,800 is being allocated to the local sports partnership in Laois and €10,000 to sport partnership in Offaly for sports innovation projects.
“This funding aims specifically to promote and develop new programmes and projects that can advance sport and physical activity in the post-Covid-19 public health era.
“This Government is committed to the Irish sports sector and earlier this year announced funding of €70 million to protect the national sports system in Ireland.
“Over €64 million of funding has been allocated to National Governing Bodies, Local Sports Partnerships and other funded bodies across four key schemes.
“An Emergency Fund to the value of €5.8 million has been ring-fenced to offset losses incurred by sports organisations during the current Level 5 restrictions and the remaining period of 2020.
“Sport Ireland was in a position to meet the requests of National Governing Bodies for their club networks to the tune of €9.7 million, and an additional €5 million will also be invested in the GAA, IRFU and FAI club networks.”
While Minister of State of the Department of Finance, Sean Fleming, says this money will be put to good use.
He said: “I know Laois Sports Partnership will be pleased with the announcement to assist them as the sports sector has been significantly impacted by the various COVID19 restrictions imposed since March of this year.”