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Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots MLA, has met with representatives from Friends of Denamona Primary School in Fintona which received financial assistance from his Department’s Micro Capital Grants Scheme.

This Scheme, funded under his Department’s Tackling Rural Poverty and Social Isolation (TRPSI) Programme, offers Micro Capital grants of between £200 and £1,500 to rural community-led, voluntary organisations for projects tackling issues of local poverty and / or social isolation and to assist the recovery and reset of rural communities following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The group, Friends of Denamona Primary School, received funding of £1,397, which enabled the purchase of eight ipads for use through loan by members of the rural community.

Speaking during his visit, Minister Poots said: “I am delighted to be able to visit the school and meet with those who have benefitted from this Scheme, which has enabled them to help others within their community. The Micro Capital Grants Scheme plays a vital role in helping rural communities help themselves to deliver enhanced services for their local communities. Funding from this scheme allows local community and voluntary groups to address issues in rural areas such as social isolation and encourages community spirit."

The Minister concluded: The Rural Micro Capital Grant Scheme is another example of how my Department is actively tackling rural poverty and social isolation and illustrates the importance of the community and voluntary sector in supporting rural communities and rural sustainability. This has been particularly evident during the last 12 months when our rural community and voluntary sector groups played a leading role in the local response to the Covid-19 pandemic in delivering services to those most in need and I want to commend them for that.”

For more information contact your Rural Support Network