Irish football legend Niall Quinn, with the help of members of the Diamond Twirlers and Bay City Boxing Club, has today launched the eleventh annual Dublin Bus Community Spirit Awards and called on community groups across the Capital to register for a Community Spirit Award now and make 2015 a year to remember.
Using unclaimed passenger change to support grassroots voluntary groups around the capital since 2004, The Dublin Bus Community Spirit Awards have helped fund over 1,800 voluntary groups. These include groups supporting people with disabilities, community development projects, youth clubs and services, football clubs, family resource and community centres, services for older people, boxing clubs, scout groups and dance clubs for young people.
The Community Spirit Awards provides voluntary groups across the Greater Dublin Area with support to develop new projects, grow services and help raise community spirit in their local community. Any voluntary group located within the area Dublin Bus services operate is eligible to apply for a grant of €1,000, €2,000 or €5,000. Dublin Bus Community Spirit Awards application forms are available from www.dublinbus.ie/csiapplication
Speaking in his role as patron of the Dublin Bus Community Spirit Awards Niall Quinn said: “Since 2004, when the Community Spirit Awards were first awarded, I have seen the difference these grants have made to local community groups and their members, young and old. From musical equipment to building repairs the awards have provided crucial help to these communities and I hope every voluntary group in Dublin applies for a Dublin Bus Community Spirit Award and makes this year a year to remember”.
There were 86 recipients in 2014, drawn from a wide variety of community groups and initiatives, including The Laura Brennan Charitable Trust, a group that provide financial support to Children and their families who are suffering from life threatening illness; Nurture, a charity rolling out the WRAP programme which helps empower women with mental health difficulties after child birth; Sticks & Stones, an anti-bullying programme that delivers anti-bullying initiatives to schools in Dublin; Age Action, a charity which promotes positive ageing and better policies and services for older people; PALS Preschool, a group that provides early intervention programmes for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Dublin Bus chief executive Paddy Doherty said: “Dublin commuters support us very day as they join us on Dublin Bus routes and we want to help support the communities we service. The Community Spirit Awards help Dublin Bus customers give back to their own communities and support community groups that strive to improve their local areas as well as lives of local families. The only initiative of its kind in Ireland we are proud that it has gone from strength to strength over the last eleven years and Dublin Bus along with the help of Dubliners is putting long-term unclaimed change to good use in communities across the city”.
The closing date for applications is 29/05/2015. Successful applicants will be notified by Dublin Bus from August 2015 onwards.