Get Involved

Get Involved – The Sustainable Communities Initiative

Community has always been important to us here is Ireland. We might be famous for our globe-trotting ways but we are passionate about our home turf – in the most local sense. Get Involved encourages communities to come together to preserve the best aspects of their local areas, to protect their environment and to create local jobs.

It’s an initiative that’s built around a competition. Since 2013, projects all over Ireland have competed to share in a significant prize fund. In 2017/18 the winning projects will share a fund of €17,000. However, above and beyond the competition, Get Involved is about encouraging people to take positive action and to become responsible for their local areas.

Projects gain enormous support through Get Involved. The initiative was developed by Local Ireland, a group that represents 43 local newspapers and each of the Get Involved projects is paired with one of these local news brands. The partner newspaper provides coverage of the project as work progresses and sometimes even offers hands on assistance too!

Local Ireland, our newspaper members and our sponsor, SEAI are extremely proud of Get Involved. The initiative brings clear benefits to local economies and the environment by helping communities to become low-carbon, resource-efficient and economically resilient.

Get Involved 2018 will focus on the following four areas:

  1. Sustainable energy
    Projects based around community co-ops for local energy; building energy efficient retrofits; or producing renewable fuels for use locally to provide heat, transport and power.
  2. Food Production
    Projects that are involved in growing and processing local food produce for the needs of their community through community food co-ops.
  3. Nature/Biodiversity
    Community projects that enhance, restore and protect nature and ecosystems. Eco-tourism projects will also be included in this category, particularly those projects that can demonstrate the creation of sustainable local employment.
  4. Water-Resource Efficiency
    Locally-based projects that recognise the requirement for water sustainability and/or raise awareness of how critical this invaluable resource is to localities. This category will also include projects that aim to develop markets for recyclables in Ireland.

It should be noted that projects do not need to be completed by the end of the calendar year. However clear and demonstrable project progress will have to be proven as will fulfilment of the judging criteria. Projects that are already established and working to clear defined plan are also eligible to enter.  The competition will be judged by a panel or four, including a representative of SEAI and will be chaired by broadcaster and environmentalist, Duncan Stewart.

The Prizes

Category winners will receive €2,000 with the overall winner receiving an additional  €3,000

2nd placed entries in each category will receive     €1,000

3rd Placed entries in each category will receive       €500

Last Year’s Winners

Broadford and Ashford Walking Trails, Co. Limerick and St. Patrick’s Boys National School, Skibbereen Sensory Garden  were joint winners and each shared €3,000.

Timeframes

  • Selection of projects by 23rd February 2018
  • First round judging based on submissions, September 2018
  • Site visits to shortlisted projects, Late September 2018
  • Awards ceremony, Awards ceremony October 2018

Get in touch

If you have any queries please contact us at info@get-involved.ie

Or Johnny O’Hanlon, johanlon@localireland.info