The future of one of Ireland’s oldest community radio stations is secure following the identification of a new funding programme.
Connemara Community Radio’s future was raised in the Dáil by Galway West TD, Seán Kyne arising from concerns brought to him by volunteers and listeners of the service.
The Letterfrack-based station serves over 11,500 people in North and West Connemara but had faced serious financial difficulties from January given recent changes to the Local Community Development structures. The Station’s application under its existing funding programme has been turned down as a result of the changes.
“Having raised this important matter with the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White TD and the Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government, Alan Kelly TD, I’m delighted that a new funding stream has been found under the Community Services Programme operated by the Department of Social Protectionm” said Deputy Kyne.
“Connemara Community Radio provides an important service in Connemara with a strong emphasis on community and volunteering as well as maintaining a vital link with the region’s diaspora.
“The station has studios in Letterfrack and also, uniquely for Ireland, on Inishbofin island from which part of the schedule is broadcast.
“This week the head of the Department of Social Protection’s Community Initiatives and Employment Services confirmed that arrangements are being put in place for the transition to the new funding programme with the contract to be finalised in the coming weeks. This will ensure there will be no disruption to the valuable service the station provides to Connemara,” concluded Deputy Kyne.