The Cork Foundation, which works with donors in Ireland and overseas to fund social enterprise projects in the Cork region, has announced the Ludgate Hub is to benefit from its fund-raising programmes.
The charity has five fund-raising programmes, Pledge to Cork and the Champions Programme, under which the Ludgate Hub initiative is categorised — as well as Friends of Cork, The Patron Programme, and CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) Connection.
Established five years ago, the foundation has so far funded 22 projects in the Cork area, according to chief executive Pádraic Vallely, who points to projects such as the Cork Life Centre, an education programme based in Sunday’s Well supporting early school-leavers to finish their state exams, The Field of Dreams on the Curraheen Road, a horticultural training centre for adults with Down Syndrome, and Benchspace on the Marina, which hires carpentry equipment at a reasonable rate to aspiring carpenters, supporting them in setting up their own business.
The organisation, he explains, connects or “matches” local and international donors to relevant social enterprise projects in the wider Cork community, thus helping to create employment.
“This improves the lives of families and provides an opportunity for successful people to give back to their people, place and heritage,” said Mr Vallely, who added that the Ludgate Hub was considered a “good fit” for the Cork Foundation:
“Ludgate is a social enterprise project which is community driven, community focused and which empowers the creation of jobs in the community. It has made Skibbereen a one-gigabit town, thus encouraging more and more people to live and work there.
This will be a strategic partnership which would, in turn, be part of our fundraising arm — we want to support a total of 45 projects in the next three years and we want to invest €1m in these projects,” he said.
The hub’s mission, meanwhile, is to help create 500 jobs in the West Cork area by 2020,
Mr Vallely emphasised the funding to the Ludgate Hub would very much depend on the level of financial contributions the foundation received from its donors.
“On average, we would expect to put €30,000 into each full-time project, but there’s no guarantee of funding as it all depends on what we receive from our donors.
“We are completely donor-driven and donor-funded across Ireland, UK and the US.”
Last September, the foundation established a committee in London to target funding from London-based donors interested in supporting projects in Cork. It is currently working towards establishing a similar mission in San Francisco.
The London initiative had been very successful to date, Mr Vallely reported: “So far we have been pledged significant contributions towards different projects in Cork.
This article by Ailin Quinlan, is featured in today’s Irish Examiner.