Community Finance Ireland is pleased to announce its support for the SERI Census Campaign, a significant initiative aimed at uplifting social enterprises throughout Ireland. This partnership underscores Community Finance Ireland’s commitment to fostering positive change and community development.
In a notable achievement, Mobile IT CLG has emerged as the winner of Community Finance Ireland’s prize for their participation in the SERI Social Enterprise Census. This recognition highlights their dedication to the social enterprise sector and their impactful work within the community.
The celebratory event took place at the Deebert House Hotel in Kilmallock, Co. Limerick, where key figures from Mobile IT CLG, including Maureen Browne (Chairperson) and Alice Quinlan, joined Nora Keogh (Client Relationship Manager at Community Finance Ireland) and Catherine Fitzgerald from Charleville to discuss all things social enterprise related.
Community Finance Ireland and SERI are both committed to supporting social enterprises that make a lasting impact on our communities. Together, they aim to empower social enterprises across Ireland, ensuring that they have the resources and recognition they deserve.
For more information on this collaboration and the SERI Census Campaign, please visit SERI’s website.
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– Community Finance Ireland delivers €1.2million in support of Limerick communities
Newcastle West Tennis Club is ready to welcome new members for 2023 as newly resurfaced courts ensure all-weather access and state of the art facilities for players of all ages and experiences. The club has completed renovations with the support of Community Finance Ireland, an all-island social finance provider.
Newcastle West Tennis Club, which was founded in 1927, had been closed for seven years when a group of volunteers were inspired to reopen the club during the first 2020 lockdown. The club now has 370 members on its books, aged between six and 70.
Cllr Tom Ruddle, Chair of Newcastle West Tennis Club,said:
“The courts were in a bad state of disrepair. In those first weeks, we put in a lot of hard work to clean the place up. We were determined to bring it up to scratch and received initial Council grants to install floodlights and make improvement to the grounds.”
With further funding needed to resurface the courts, Newcastle West Tennis Club was approved €42.5k in Sports Capital Grants but this presented the group of volunteers with a new challenge.
“We were delighted to be approved Sports Capital Grant funding, but to access that we had to undertake the works in order to then claim back the grant,” said Cllr Ruddle. “As volunteers we couldn’t take on that kind of financial responsibility from a traditional bank and go into debt for the sake of the club. Luckily, we were able to access a bridging loan from Community Finance Ireland to get started and unlock the grant. It was a fantastic solution.”
As a social enterprise, Community Finance Ireland provides social finance loans to volunteer-led and community organisations that drive social impact.
Nora Keogh, Client Relationship Manager for Munster, said:
“Newcastle West Tennis Club has such a rich history and it’s an important facility for the town and the wider community. We were delighted to be able to help Tom and the team get their renovations underway and players can get back on the courts. At Community Finance Ireland, we have a wealth of experience working with community organisations and our supports are tailored for their needs- we don’t ask for personal guarantees and our loans are fast, fair and flexible.”
Ms Keogh has played a role in supporting 66 organisations in Munster to access a total of €7 million in social finance supports since 2016. She said: “We’ve worked with nine organisations in Limerick already but as far as I’m concerned, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. If there are more sports clubs, arts organisations, faith-based groups and social enterprises out there who want to make a change for their local community, I’m here to help them make that possible.”
Cllr Ruddle says Community Finance Ireland is the only way to go for sports clubs:
“It’s a no brainer. What struck me most was the level of trust and personal care from Nora and the Community Finance Ireland team. I’ve been involved in local clubs my whole life and I’d definitely be recommending them to other clubs and community groups in Limerick”
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Today CFI’s impact was evidenced as Nora Keogh Client Relationship Manager for the Munster region, provided support to local social enterprise Limerick Gateway to Education.
Nora met with the brilliant charity, based in Limerick City, to hear first-hand how they are working to address social and economic barriers to education.
Our thanks also to the Limerick Leader for also recognising the merits of this organisation and featuring the organisation’s story in the local business section of the paper and online on theilovelimerick.ie website.
Community Finance Ireland delivers social finance solutions that support local communities and drive social impact through sports, community projects, faith-based groups, and social enterprises.
Community Finance Ireland was established in 1995, and now supports a diverse portfolio of clients across the island of Ireland from Bantry to Belfast, and from Dublin to Dingle.
Currently, Community Finance Ireland is the only Irish and UK member of FEBEA, the European Federation of Ethical and Alternative Banks.
Pictured above: Nora Keogh (CFI Client Relationship Manager Munster) with Limerick Gateway to Education’s Andy Fogerty (Accountant), Paul Goodwin (Assistant Manager) and Suzanne Roche (CEO , Founder).
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