Community centres provide vital community services and are stretched to the limit by funding. Community centres are the hubs of our community, they provide youth services with Crosscare, Senior citizens groups etc. They are much needed community services and need to be funded fully to ensure that they can continue to provide the services and expand on current services

Pobal funded staff earn €10 per hour , With the rising costs of rents and living expenses , it is getting increasingly difficult to retain and recruit suitable staff , Staff in our community centres open and close our centres , they are key holders and they facilitate groups along with many other roles.

Customer assistants in Lidls get €12- per hour and Aldis pay €11.90 per hour  The living wage in Ireland for 2018 was €11.90. I ask the minister to ask that Pobal CSP Funding is looked and the rates paid and to also look how community centres are funded and staffed

 

MEETING OF SOUTH DUBLIN COUNTY COUNCIL

Monday, March 11, 2019

MOTION NO. 7

MOTION: Councillor F. Timmons

That this council commends the work and value of community centres within our county and throughout the communities they serve, we commit to writing to the minister to ask that Pobal Funding is looked and the rates paid and to also look how community centres are funded and staffed. Also that’s the wages reflect the invaluable community work in delivering groups and other responsibilities and in particular working with vulnerable people.  And that SDCC continue to look at all ways to support this invaluable work and look at expanding community centres as hubs of our community.

REPORT:

South Dublin County is well served by a large network of community facilities covering the vast majority of the main neighbourhoods in the County with provision in the Council’s Three-Year Capital Programme 2019-2021 to fund additional facilities where appropriate in the coming years.  The majority of the existing community facilities in the County are built on Council owned land and are usually managed by independent local voluntary management committees (legal companies in their own right, independent of the Council and established as Companies Limited by Guarantee) under management licences provided by the Council.

A number of years ago the then Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs announced a Community Services Programme (CSP), administered by Pobal, which provided the opportunity for community centre management companies to apply for funding to assist with the costs of employing a number of staff – this funding was quite limited and only a small number of community centres could be supported.  A competition was held in the County, facilitated by the Tallaght and Clondalkin Partnerships with some six community centres successfully acquiring funding. The funding allocated under CSP provided crucial support to those community centres in the subsequent years but there have only been extremely minimal opportunities for further funding for additional centres under the scheme since then, generally arising when other centres or projects exited the scheme.

The setting of staff salaries and wages in local community centres are a matter for the relevant management companies employing those staff working in the community facilities with local community officers on hand to provide advice – companies are always strongly advised to ensure that appropriate payscales and salaries are adopted to reflect the duties and roles of the staff in the centres.

The Council’s Community Services Department is constantly available to advise, assist and support the management committees of all centres in the County as well as recognising the commendable efforts and volunteerism in managing community centres to support delivery of a wide range of community