The county will see the rollout of a significant new name over the coming weeks as North Tipperary LEADER Partnership rebrands as North Tipperary Development Company, reflecting its overall work as a Local Development Company engaged in community-led developmental work

Liam Sheedy will be on hand later in the month to launch the new name and identity but otherwise all aspects of the services which provides services for 5,000 individuals and over 210 communities and community groups each year will remain the same.

In recent years, NTLP has been attracting up to €7 million in funding annually to the county to fund services that are overseen by local voluntary committees.

Chairperson Jim Finn explains that the increasing scope of the company’s services has prompted the name change,

“NTLP was originally set up to run two core programmes in rural development and social inclusion. However, we now attract funding from nine separate government departments and agencies annually and we deliver almost twenty separate services and programmes.

“What distinguishes us is our approach. It’s bottom-up, community-lead, close to the point of delivery and above all, developmental. This goes right across our programmes – individuals and communities will always get the same approach from our staff and volunteers and we have felt for some time that our name should reflect this developmental approach.”

North Tipperary Development Company’s work will continue to span the entire range of rural development, social inclusion, employment services and local development. The impacts of these services, at individual and community level, are felt in all parts of the county.

Under the last LEADER Programme, NTLP approved 329 projects, with a spend of €10.5m in public funding, matched by €5.3 million from project promoters, resulting in a total investment of €15.8m into North Tipperary. The current LEADER Programme is now up and running and accepting applications.

The Community Employment, Tús and Rural Social Schemes employ 220 local people who provide vital services to over 140 communities and groups throughout the county.

Almost 800 people annually receive employment supports through the Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme, Jobs Club and other programmes in Nenagh, Thurles and Roscrea and the company continues to work closely with those who need training or job-readiness skills to help get them into to the workplace.

The Ascend Domestic Abuse Service for Women, North Tipperary offers confidential support services to women who have or are experiencing Domestic Abuse in their intimate relationships. In the past five years, one-to-one supports, helpline information, court accompaniment and outreach support have been provided to over 1,500 women in North Tipperary. Preventative education work also takes place in schools and communities. The Ascend confidential helpline is 0505-23999.

The Traveller Programme is making a vital contribution to the well-being of the local Traveller population and has trained and employed seven Traveller Community Health Workers who have conducted thousands of home visits to 220 families across North Tipperary.

Other programmes include youth supports, childcare services, community energy and fuel poverty supports.

Company CEO, Michael Murray, outlined the continued community development approach,

“As we evolve to North Tipperary Development Company, we will continue to be the resource that local communities can see as their own, being centred on the development of individuals, groups and communities, ensuring that funding and programmes are deployed for their benefit.”