The Irish National Rural Network (NRN) will be running a ‘LEADER Programme Promotion Week’ on our social media channels from the 29th of June to the 3rd of July 2020 on behalf of Ireland’s Department of Rural and Community Development (DRCD) and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM). This initiative will provide the general public with an in-depth insight into the LEADER Programme 2014-2020, as well as help future applicants conceptualise their ideas and see what is possible through LEADER’s unique ‘bottom up’ approach to rural development.
The LEADER Programme is a key element of Ireland’s Rural Development Programme (RDP) 2014-2020, providing both private enterprise and community groups throughout the country with the resources necessary to actively engage with, and direct the economic development, social inclusion and environmental protection of their local area, through community-led local development. The current LEADER budget allocated to Ireland provides €250 million in grant aid to support rural communities and local businesses.
The LEADER Programme’s centrality, and indeed enduring success over the past three decades in facilitating rural development throughout Ireland and the European Union illustrates its potential in helping rural communities and entrepreneurs to not only to rebuild and redevelop as part of the Covid-19 Crisis recovery response, but also to assist them in creating an innovative and sustainable way forward.