Make a dif­fer­ence in your com­mu­nity!

Bray People - - INSIDE BUSINESS -

THIS IS your chance to make a dif­fer­ence in your com­mu­nity in County Wick­low by con­tribut­ing to a more sus­tain­able Ire­land through the very suc­cess­ful Get In­volved project.

Get In­volved 2013 saw com­mu­ni­ties all over Ire­land part­ner with their lo­cal news­pa­pers to bring about real ben­e­fits in their area.

People formed groups and un­der­took a wide range of mean­ing­ful sus­tain­able en­vi­ron­men­tal projects.

This year, or­gan­is­ers Re­gional News­pa­pers and Print­ers As­so­ci­a­tion of Ire­land (RNPAI) and NNI Lo­cal and Re­gional News­pa­pers have been joined by the Sus­tain­able En­ergy As­so­ci­a­tion of Ire­land (SEAI) as main spon­sors of the 2014 na­tion­wide Get In­volved com­pe­ti­tion.

All suc­cess­ful en­tries will re­ceive full sup­port from this news­pa­per, in­clud­ing ex­ten­sive pub­lic­ity through­out the project and as­sis­tance iden­ti­fy­ing lo­cal ex­per­tise, sources of fund­ing and other el­e­ments.

The com­pe­ti­tion will be judged by the chair­man of the judg­ing panel, broad­caster and en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist, Dun­can Ste­wart, along with panel mem­bers Anja Mur­ray, In­de­pen­dent Ecol­o­gist, and Davie Philip, Cul­ti­vate Com­mu­nity Re­silience Pro­gramme.

Sug­gested projects in­clude en­ergy, wa­ter, food, na­ture/bio­di­ver­sity, sus­tain­able em­ploy­ment, eco­tourism and re­source ef­fi­ciency

Over 1,386 vol­un­teers par­tic­i­pated in the Get In­volved cam­paign last year, which saw lo­cal news­pa­pers through­out the coun­try team up with com­mu­nity groups to im­prove lo­cal ar­eas.

Their Tro­jan ef­fort, amount­ing to over 42,400 man hours, was highly praised by Pres­i­dent Hig­gins who said those who had taken part were work­ing to­gether to im­prove their towns and vil­lages, both for vis­i­tors but also for res­i­dents.

Speak­ing about the projects Pres­i­dent Hig­gins said: ‘ They are up­lift­ing re­minders of the enthusiasm, in­no­va­tion and all we can do to­gether and the ca­pac­ity that still ex­ists in abun­dance in towns, vil­lages and sub­urbs across the coun­try.

‘That kind of ac­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion and the build­ing of the dy­namic of in­clu­sive com­mu­ni­ties where ev­ery­one is en­cour- aged to play their part is very, very im­por­tant.

Each of the 22 projects was cham­pi­oned by a lo­cal news­pa­per, and Pres­i­dent Hig­gins said the re­gional press con­tinue to play a hugely im­por­tant role in com­mu­ni­ties around Ire­land.

He also praised the sup­port lo­cal news­pa­pers pro­vided to projects in the Get In­volved cam­paign, which is the brain­child of the Na­tional News­pa­pers of Ire­land Lo­cal and Re­gional and Re­gional News­pa­pers and Print­ers As­so­ci­a­tion of Ire­land.

Broad­caster and en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist Dun­can Ste­wart, who chaired the 2013 judg­ing panel, said the projects high­lighted a shift in be­hav­iour among com­mu­ni­ties across Ire­land.

‘I be­lieve we're on the cusp of a mas­sive bot­tom-up revo­lu­tion in this coun­try.Project mem­bers like those in Get In­volved will be the ones who pioneer this mas­sive change.’

The win­ner of the in­au­gu­ral Get In­volved cam­paign for 2013 was St Brendan's Na­tional School in Kilmeena, Co Mayo. The school's project in­volved wa­ter con­ser­va­tion and sus­tain­abil­ity and its or­gan­is­ers man­aged to get all of the chil­dren and the whole com­mu­nity, in­clud­ing res­i­dents and com­mu­ni­ties.

En­tries must be re­ceived by Fri­day, April 18.

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