Good afternoon conference delegates. Hopefully you have been well fed over lunch time, and not too sleepy as a result! My name is John Carson from the Fund’s Belfast Office. My aim is to provide you with an overview of one of the four key areas of the Fund’s activity – namely Building Integration or moving towards a more integrated society. And to ensure we keep to the allotted time of 1 hour!
Let me outline the Board’s current Strategy. Important to emphasise the need for adopting this strategy in securing continued contribution from the US (reluctance of the US to continue supporting purely economic intervention and their interest on the sharing agenda – education, housing, community groups). Each of our programmes complement the actions of the two governments, but do not substitute for them.
During this workshop you are going to hear something about the nature of projects and communities impacted; the aims and targets of the mentioned Programmes; the challenges encountered and lessons learned; and where possible results/outcomes, both tangible and intangible. Moving towards a more integrated society was a new departure for the Fund, with a number of new programmes aimed at filling clearly identified gaps in this area of activity. In education, we support work aimed at identifying best practice in sharing and collaborative education, and at mainstreaming or embedding some of these elements more widely across the education sector. We also support the aim of making schools welcoming to people of all backgrounds, encouraging diversity and better reflecting the overall community mix. The Fund also supports the development of shared housing and integrated community organisations. Managing Agents Contracts for Managing Programmes Rural Development Council NI - Integrating Community Groups Government Departments – Dept of Education NI – Sharing in Education Programme NI Housing Executive - SNP Development Officers - RoI
Where groups are already working together, the Programme aims to deepen the level of co-operation and encourage, if possible, a merger. For groups without a partner, the Programme helps them develop closed links with a group from the other community. Programme offers support for up to 12 months to strengthen partnerships and opportunities for small joint projects. After this partnerships may seek funding for larger projects. We have over 30 partnerships, 29 of whom moved on to do a large project over a 2-3 year period together, and 24 more partnerships on the way.
Established in late 2008, and managed on our behalf by the Department of Education, the Programme encompasses pre-school, primary, post-primary and special education; the promotion of community relations within and between schools and teacher education. The DE IFI Liaison Team is currently taking forward 21 projects under the SiEP with an approximate value of £15.5 million (as at Feb 2011 Board) As a result, of the strategic relationship, funding of £3.2m has also been secured from Atlantic Philanthropies (AP), who joint fund three of the projects. Consequently, the strategic relationship with the Fund and AP has led to an investment of around £18.7m to date in Sharing in Education Programme projects. In addition, other funding, or in-kind contribution from some groups amounts to £500,000 approx. While many of our funded projects are in the developmental stage, anecdotal evidence from teachers, pupils, parents and communities has been extremely positive to date. To date it has involved nearly 30,000 pupils.
The SNP is managed by the NI Housing Executive, and f ive community based cohesion advisers are employed specifically for this Programme. What makes this Programme particularly unique is that it is the first time that many of these communities who have been working quietly becoming genuinely shared spaces have been recognised and supported in such a proactive way. In addition, this Programme is community led, making it flexible to every community’s particular needs and circumstances. Definition of a Shared Neighbourhood : A Shared Neighbourhood is one where people chose to live with each other regardless of their religion or race, in a neighbourhood that is safe and welcoming to all. An independent evaluation found that SNP is just one of the many possible responses to the issue of segregated housing but it is perhaps the response with the most potential to make the most difference. The evaluation also praised SNP’s community led nature and its success in driving forward partnerships between social housing estates, within those estates and between communities and statutory agencies. This means that over 60,000 people in Northern Ireland now live in a shared neighbourhood. Over £870,000 has been committed to the SNP by the IFI and the Programme is the result of our willingness to take risks for peace through our approach to being ‘first money on the table’ and investing in new initiatives for dealing with sectarianism.
First presentation is by Martin McDonald, RDC, on Integrating Comm Org Second presentation by Andrew Bell, DE, is on SiEP And final presentation is by Jennifer Hawthorne, NIHE, on SNP These will last for 7 mins each.
We now have Breakaway Workshops – 25 mins – followed by a short Q&A session of 10 mins.
FCT 20110525-09 - IFI Building Integration - Overview - John Carson IFI
International Fund for Ireland FORUM FOR CITIES IN TRANSITION LONDONDERRY/DERRY 25 MAY 2011
Overview - Building Integration <ul><li>JOHN CARSON </li></ul><ul><li>INTERNATIONAL FUND FOR IRELAND </li></ul><ul><li>SECRETARIAT </li></ul>
Building Integration - Current Programmes <ul><li>Integrating Community Groups </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing in Education </li></ul><ul><li>Shared Neighbourhood </li></ul>
Integrating Community Groups <ul><li>Fund’s Strategy identified the integration of community organisations as a key means of promoting social integration and reconciliation </li></ul><ul><li>Programme aims to encourage community organisations from each side of the community to work together in co-operation </li></ul>
Sharing in Education Programme <ul><li>SiEP supports the Fund’s strategic objectives by enabling young people to participate in shared educational experiences </li></ul><ul><li>SiEP aims to provide a range of opportunities for young people to learn together and reach the highest standards of educational achievement </li></ul>
Shared Neighbourhood Programme <ul><li>SNP was a major new strategic programme developed by the International Fund for Ireland to support and encourage shared neighbourhoods across Northern Ireland. </li></ul><ul><li>SNP aims to provide practical support and grants to existing social housing areas that are already striving to promote shared space and housing. </li></ul><ul><li>Over three years, a total of 30 shared neighbourhoods developed across Northern Ireland. </li></ul><ul><li>As a result of the success of SNP, the responsible Government Dept has agreed to mainstream and fund a new Programme. </li></ul>
Presentations <ul><li>Integrating Community Organisations – presentation by Martin McDonald, Rural Development Council </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing in Education Programme – presentation by Andrew Bell, Dept of Education NI </li></ul><ul><li>Shared Neighbourhood Programme – presentation by Jennifer Hawthorne, NI Housing Executive </li></ul>
Overview Presentation End <ul><li>Thank you! </li></ul>