Environment Minister Mark H Durkan today visited three community groups in Cookstown and Dungannon, who have been allocated funding through DOE’s Challenge Fund.
The Minister has recently allocated funding to Ardboe Community Projects, Moortown St Malachy’s GAC and Tobin Youth Centre and wants to see at firsthand how it will be spent.
Ardboe Community Projects will engage families and school children in discovering, and raising awareness of, Lough Neagh’s important natural environment. Tobin Youth Centre will convert disused land into a vibrant community garden, promoting environmental education across all generations. Moortown St Malachys GAC will improve biodiversity on their grounds, with the help of many volunteers, increasing environmental awareness in the community.
Commending the projects Mark H Durkan said: “It is tremendous to see people in Dungannon and Cookstown coming together to produce innovative schemes to enhance their local environment. I commend them for it. Recently I announced that 33 community groups across the North were successful in obtaining Challenge Funding for their projects.
“When I launched the fund, a key requirement for me was that not only would the local environment improve but that there had to be a tangible benefit for the local community. The Cookstown and Dungannon groups are delivering that in spades. It is great to see how the local community really engaged in these innovative projects, by committing their own time and skills through volunteering.”
The Minister continued: “I have pledged that all money raised from our 5p levy on carrier bags would be ploughed back into the environment. The Challenge Fund is one way of doing that.”
The Challenge Fund is created via receipts from the levy on carrier bags.