LEADER Programme Activity in the LEADER programme has continued to increase as we delve into 2020. As of the end of March, there are 2,978 projects approved for LEADER funding across Ireland. These, almost 3,000 projects, have a total value of almost €114.6m.

This is an increase of over 300 projects and additional spend of almost €16m since our last LEADER Programme update at end of November 2019, which can be found in our December LEADER newsletter. Furthermore, there are an additional 411 projects in the middle of the approval process with a value of nearly €32.2m.

The LEADER Programme is continuing to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department of Rural and Community Development (DRCD) in conjunction with Local Action Groups (LAGs) are continuing to process payments on a weekly basis so that much needed funding can reach rural communities and businesses during this difficult time.

For those thinking about applying for LEADER funding, there is still time to apply to the current programme. Many LAGs and Implementing Partners (IPs) across the country are still operating within their communities and delivering on the LEADER Programme, but are finding alternative ways to work in order to practice safe social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. To find your nearest LEADER Programme contacts, please see our interactive Local Action Groups (LAGS) Map here.

Furthermore, to learn more about the LEADER application process and the different steps involved, see our Step by Step LEADER Funding Application Guide.