LGBT+ service in County Clare gets a funding boost

The funding will be used to provide LGBT+ supports and training services to 10 existing community organisations across County Clare.

LGBT+ Clare. Pictured at Áras Contae an Chláir following the announcement of funding awarded to Clare LGBTI+ services were (clockwise from centre): Mayor of Clare, Cllr Mary Howard; Brian McManus, Youth Work Manager, Clare Youth Services; Emma Sams, Youth and Community Development Worker, North West Clare Family Resource Centre; Kees Duson, Manager, Killaloe/Ballina Family Resource Centre; Cillian Flynn, Operations Manager, GOSHH; Patrick McElligott, LGBT Support Worker, GOSHH; Ann Mason, General Manager, GOSHH; Yvonne McElligott, Clare Haven Services; and Deirdre Power, Rural Development, Clare County Council.

LGBT+ services in County Clare have received a much-needed boost as €35,000 has been awarded under the Dormant Accounts Fund.

The money will enable existing organisations to complete projects ensuring communities are inclusive and welcoming to the LGBT+ community.

Following a nationwide call for organisations who would be interested, ten organisations based in Clare will benefit from the funding: Clare Women’s Network, Clare Haven, Clare Youth Service, North West Clare Family Resource Centre, Ennis Musical Society, Fishbowl Youth, Burren Art Gallery, Scariff Foróige Youth Club and Killaloe – Ballina Family Resource Centre.

Research shows that LGBT+ individuals living in small towns or rural areas can be very isolated that is brought about by a combination of factors including LGBT+ identities and difficulty coming out, age, lack of LGBT+ friendly spaces and geographical gaps in community supports.

Mayor of Clare, Cllr Mary Howard, has welcomed this funding support for non-profit organisations around the county, saying: “It offers a great opportunity to staff and participants of organisations who wish to receive training and support services.”

Bernadette Haugh, Senior Executive Officer, Rural Development, Clare County Council, said: “The funding will ensure that existing community infrastructure is inclusive and welcoming to all LGBT+ individuals.”

The funding will support GOSHH (Gender Orientation Sexual Health HIV) in providing services to local communities in County Clare.

GOSHH aims to create an environment where the mental, emotional, physical and social well-being of everyone is promoted and sexual rights are respected, protected and fulfilled.

Speaking about the fund, Ann Mason, GOSHH Manager, said: “Rural isolation can have a major impact on the social and mental health of LGBTI+ people. We are delighted to receive this funding which will allow LGBTI+ people and their families avail of support services available from GOSHH and we encourage people who need to access supports to contact us.”

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