Emigrant Support Programme grants £5.5 million to 'vibrant and active' Irish community in Britain

Emigrant Support Programme grants £5.5 million to 'vibrant and active' Irish community in Britain

The Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development, Mr Ciarán Cannon TD, yesterday announced a £5.5 million budget to continue to promote Britain's thriving Irish community.

Funded by the Emigrant Support Programme, 105 organisations will benefit from the grant, which was announced during an event at the Irish Embassy in London last night, October 22nd 2019.

Organisations set to benefit from the investment include homeless charities, housing support networks, traditional Irish music schools, senior citizen groups and many more.

The Minister thanked the organisations for the important work they do in promoting Britain's vibrant Irish community, and for their support of the most vulnerable people in Ireland's emigrant population.

"Ireland is truly fortunate to have such a committed and dedicated group of organisations who continue to work tirelessly for the Irish community in Britain in terms of the provision of frontline support to those most in need, as well as playing a very important role in advocating for the needs of the wider Irish community," Mr Cannon said.

He continued:

"It is my hope that this funding will assist in the provision of a vibrant and active Irish community in Britain whose contribution the Government values very highly and who have an important role to play in the context of Ireland’s evolving relationship with the UK."

Irish people have been the biggest source of emigration to the UK for centuries, and the Emigrant Support Programme remains the frontline welfare service provider which supports elderly Irish emigrants and other vulnerable members of the Irish community worldwide.

The ESP have provided almost £30 million to organisations in Britain over the past six years alone.

The Irish Embassy have called the ESP "a tangible expression of the Government's support and commitment to the global Irish community.

"It's a core part of our work in the Embassy and we hugely value the commitment and insight of our ESP partners".