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Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Carbery Housing Association need help

Carbery Housing Association is a small Housing Association based in Skibbereen that I have been working with since we set it up in 2001. We have two properties on long-term leases from private owners that we let our to families on the housing list at Council-equivalent rents, through a Govt. subsidy programme. We are looking to expand our work to the "rescue" of families who are in unsolvable Mortgage Arrears. This is under a programme called Mortgages to Rents, available to some approved housing bodies of which we are one.

CHA has been working with the initiative for some months and has reached the point of exchanging contracts for 7 properties in Cork City and County. The families involved are hugely relieved to think they will be able to remain in their homes. They are also agreeable that the houses will be bought by CHA and that they will become permanent tenants at Council rentals. CHA has plans to undertake energy retrofits to all the houses, once secured.AIB has made a loan offer on 75% of the purchase cost but placed a condition that we raise 25,000 EUR to be paid as deposit on the purchase. I believe this is intended to ensure that CHA has some financial margin should unexpected costs arise (i.e. one of the houses need extensive repair) that might obstruct it’s capacity to repay the loan. The loan will be met by payments made to Carbery HA from Cork City and County Councils, in exchange for housing the families concerned. This requirement is proving more difficult than it seems as Carbery HA is a small voluntary group and not experienced in large scale fund raising.Some financial support has been awarded by the St. Stephen's Green Trust which has allowed the fund- raising campaign to begin. At this stage, 1000 copies of the leaflet (above) are being distributed to local businesses and individuals and a variety of activities are planned for the coming months, including a benefit “gig" on Sunday August 16th at the West Cork Hotel.
These 7 properties, added to our exiting 2, will help build CHA into a viable local housing association providing housing for persons in need and extending the safety net for distressed mortgagees. There are 12,000 households on Cork housing lists and there are 90,000 mortgagees in + 2 years arrears in Ireland. Given spending cuts and borrowing limits, after the next election direct spending on Council housing will be difficult. Housing Associations will be needed and we are the only one based in this region providing general needs housing.

We would welcome any help or ideas that you might be able to offer. You are probably involved in many causes, but I think you will agree that there is great need for good quality housing for people who cannot afford the market.
Also see:

New Postcode 'Eircode'

You will probably hear or read reports that Eircode was launched yesterday or perhaps you saw the TV advert   

People all over County Cork will receive letters between Wednesday 15th July to Monday 20th July to notify them of the Eircode for their address and advice on how they can use it. 

The introduction of Eircode will bring numerous benefits.  Not only will it make the delivery of services and goods to households easier, but in the case of a medical emergency, being able to accurately and quickly identify an address can save valuable minutes.  Remember, addresses will not be changing - an Eircode will simply be added to current addresses. 

I work with West Cork Development Partnership as ‘Outreach Champion’ for Cork West area.  The programme is co-ordinated by The Wheel, working closely with Irish Rural Link. We’re delighted that hundreds of people from organisations throughout Cork County have got on board and are helping to reach thousands of people who might otherwise get left behind.  We’ve all been busy, meeting the target group on a one-to-one or one-to-few basis to tell them about Eircode, to answer their questions and to reassure them.  It’s been a tremendous community effort. 

We’ve only three weeks left in the programme.  This is the peak period and we’re anxious to ensure that nobody gets left behind.  We particularly want to encourage people to reach out to people they know in their own community: friends, family and neighbours, who are older, isolated or vulnerable and may not understand or may be confused by what this change means.

I’d really appreciate if you could get in touch with me if:   There is a group or an individual who you think could do with some assistance,
    You or your organisation would like further information or materials (e.g. posters or leaflets) or would like to assist in any way. 

 Lisa Cashman 

Feel free to pass on this email to others within your network.  You can contact me at:
T: 023 8834305 or 086 0251026
A: West Cork Development Partnership, West Cork Technology Park, Clonakilty, Co. Cork

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Clashmore and Kinsalebeg Open Day

Hi All,

We can confirm that the Open Day is going ahead on the 19th July at 3 pm in the GAA field in Clashmore.

The purpose of the Open day is to bring together as many of the community organisations in Clashmore and Kinsalebeg as we can. The Day 
 will provide an opportunity for the organisations to recruit more members, highlight all the things that are going on in the community, and to give people in the organisations the chance to meet and get to know each other. 

There will be games for the children, live entertainment, penalty shootout and a tug of war competition.

How you can help.
The most important thing is that you turn up on the day to show your support for the Community Council.

St Declan's Way

Waterford Leader Partnership and Community organisations are trying to revive St Declan's Way. Surveys of the work required have been carried out and a report produced..(it is quite large but I can send out copies to people who want to see it.)

This would be a good project for the Council to be involved in -
  • it crosses our area,
  • it could be one of the local walks we could develop, and
  • it also brings our existence to the notice of other neighbouring community groups. 
Are there a few volunteers willing to represent the Community Council in the planning that is going on? Please email if you are interested.
For more Details call Mike McKenna on 087 7621604 or email