Local projects shortlisted for Better Ireland programme

AIB’s Better Ireland Programme has announced details of the six Westmeath children’s projects shortlisted for the current 2009/2010 programme.

The children’s community groups shortlisted by AIB Mullingar are Saplings, Down Syndrome Longford/ Westmeath, and the Irish Wheelchair Association, while the shortlisted projects in Athlone are the Midlands Regional Youth Service Athlone, Dean Kelly NS, and the Irish Wheelchair Association.

Beginning on February 15, the local community will be asked to vote to decide how the €10,000 funding available at each branch will be distributed. Almost 1,300 applications were received by AIB branches from across the country, and a total of 546 projects - three per branch - will now be voted on by local communities.

Text and online votes from the general public will rank the projects. The one that attracts the most votes will be awarded €5,000. Second place will receive €3,000 and third place €2,000.

Voting commences on Monday February 15 and continues until March 15. This year, votes can be cast via text or online. Further details on voting will be announced shortly.

Applications for the Better Ireland Programme were received from a wide variety of groups including homework clubs, teen clubs, autistic services, community crèches, schools, and colleges as well as drug and alcohol related services for youth.

AIB head of brand management, Brenda Moriarty, said: “The AIB Better Ireland Programme is all about local participation and local voting for the benefit of local children. Our branches in Westmeath had a tough job deciding on the three projects. From February 15, people will be able to vote for their preferred children’s projects by text or online and we would encourage everyone to get behind their chosen local group.”

For more information on the shortlisted projects pop into your local AIB branch today.

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