Action Packed Summer Ahead for Limericks Successful Community Coordinators

Monday July 13, 2009

 


Limerick’s six community co-ordinators are celebrating their third year helping communities to increase community safety, improve the environment and promote community spirit in the city with an action packed summer ahead!


The Limerick Community Coordinators are modelled on a very successful scheme in the UK. This innovative Limerick scheme - the first partnership of its kind in the country-was set up as a pilot project in 2007 to help communities solve a range of social problems. Limerick City Community Safety Partnership (LCCSP) is a partnership between Limerick City Council, An Garda Siochana and the HSE and is financed by the Department of the Environment. The scheme is being monitored and evaluated on an ongoing basis by The Department of Politics and Public Administration at the University of Limerick. The scheme has proved so successful; it has now received funding for another year.


Since their launch in 2007 the team have been credited with gaining the trust of local communities, creating strong links between residents and local and statutory agencies and in re-building a sense of pride and belonging.


To date, Limerick’s Community Coordinators have:


  • Passed on over 359 reports of anti-social behaviour to the Gardai and local authorities

  • Run Safety Initiatives – safety chain and fire alarm installation

  • Facilitated information sessions for communities e.g. personal safety, fire safety

  • Set up After School Clubs for children

  • Established community based activities e.g. Walking Club, Book Club and Aerobics Classes

  • Held Community Fun Days

  • Organised Children’s Christmas card scheme linking young people with elderly neighbours

  • Initiated Community Clean-Ups, litter picks and environmental projects

  • Graffiti Removal Programme



This summer the Community Coordinators are planning a local radio campaign on Limerick’s Live 95FM. The campaign encourages community safety by reminding people to check in on their elderly neighbours and advises people how to keep their homes secure. The ads also highlight the importance of looking after the local environment by appealing to people to correctly dispose of litter. Finally, the ads ask people to include all members of the community in community events and activities and recognises the contribution residents have made to various projects and activities by saying thank you.


Community Coordinator Jenny Stone said there’s a range of further initiatives planned this summer.


“This year alone we have run a series of very successful litter picks, established a new after school club and held community BBQ’s where neighbours had the opportunity to socialise and build support networks within their estates. We received great support from the communities involved,” she said. “We’re going to continue with these community events over the summer and have lots more educational and enjoyable activities planned where local children especially can really get involved and make a difference.”


Later this month, the Limerick Community Coordinators will be working with residents to remove graffiti and to repaint the walls of two properties to improve the outlook for the neighbourhood. On the same day, the children in the Watergate area of the city centre will enjoy an “Animal Magic” Day when they’ll be visited by a selection of four legged friends and learn important animal care skills.


In August, a mini-fun day is being planned in the winning estate for the Litter Pick competition and a number of King’s Islands activity sessions are being organised in conjunction with Community Gardai and local community groups.


There are also exciting plans for the painting of a community mural at Sarsfield Park, the planting of community gardens and a Community Fun Day at Old Christians GAA club in Rathbane.


Mayor of Limerick Kevin Kiely has been very supportive of the Community Co-ordinators and he praised the great work they have done particularly with young people in giving them a greater sense of community spirit.


“The Litter Picks gave the young people a great awareness of the importance of protecting their environment and the After School Clubs have really given the children a great sporting outlet,” he said. “I’m particularly pleased that they have built up trust within the community they work and that people find them very friendly and approachable.”


Limerick City Manager Tom Mackey said: “We came together as a partnership because we felt there was a need for a presence out in the communities to help people.


“The Community Co-ordinators have developed great links with the local agencies and community groups and I am sure we will see more of the same in the future,” Mr Mackey added.


In the Southside, Jenny Stone and Catherine Andrews cover Janesboro, Kennedy Park, Glasgow Park, Rathbane and Sarsfield Park. Jenny and Catherine will be working on specific projects within the Kings Island area over the coming months also.


And on the Northside, Jean Ryan, Yvonne McMahon, Deirdre Quinn and Margaret O’Connor cover the areas of Thomondgate, Kileely, Watergate, Johns Street, Johnsgate Village and Ballynanty.


They are supported by Project Manager, Jason Murphy and Office Co-ordinator Therese Conway in Limerick City Hall.

The best endorsement they received to date was from Kileely woman Bridget Foran who said:


“ You’re the best friends I ever had. I don’t know what I would do without you.”


Laura Ryan
Communications Officer
Limerick City and County Council
Phone: 061-407100
email: laura.ryan@limerick.ie


Last update:19/02/2014

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