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Childers MEP


Focus on Funding Funding Focus on

EU-SUPPORTED MICRO-FINANCE SCHEME IRELAND'S BEST KEPT SECRET? The European Union guarantees loans up to €25,000 for people wanting to expand or start a business but cannot get finance. The EU's SME Guarantee Facility for businesses employing up to 10 people is administered in Ireland by First-Step.

First-Step has to date provided micro-finance and mentoring to everything from vintage clothes shops to restaurants to organic farms to language schools. From 2009 to 2010 they increased funding from €940,000 to €1,500,000. They have a loan-approval rating of nearly 40%.

Phil at the BT Young Scientists Exhibition with

Ben Jacobs De McKevitt, la Salle College, Andrea andfrom Ciara with Waterford Dr. Julianne Byrne from the Boyne Research Institute at the Cancer Survivors Conference.

If you have a business idea and want to pursue this funding, then fill out an application for First-Step which includes your business plan. If you need help with a business plan, then First Step is developing microenterprise learning networks while Fás, local partnerships and enterprise boards run courses for would-be entrepreneurs. Also, if you are unemployed, you could keep your benefits while doing a course. For more information on micro-finance options please contact me on 01 296 2263. Speaking at the Cross Border Healthcare Seminar in the European Parliament

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President of the European Parliment Martin Schultz with Phil Prendergast

With student from Sacred Heart Secondary School, Drogheda, Co. Louth, at 2012 Young Scientist Exhibition.

Ireland East Office 115 Main Street, Bray, Co. Wicklow Telephone: 01-296 2263 Email: nessa.childers@

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ENTERPRISE EUROPE NETWORK, ONLINE DATING FOR BUSINESSES? The Enterprise Europe Network gives Irish SMEs the opportunity to expand into new markets in 50 countries. The Network organises "matchmaking" events where you can come and meet potential partners in your sector. To date, the Network has organised over 19,000 of these events across Europe, involving more than 742,000 participants. The Network's database allows companies to upload profiles, much like Facebook or LinkedIn. The database enables small SMEs find international partners to help them expand abroad. It does this by including a cooperation offer or request in the profile. This details the precise way in which you are looking to expand your business. You are then connected to other companies in different markets who have similar interests to you. In addition, the database gives Irish companies updates on technological innovations from across the 50 countries. It does this by allowing researchers and companies upload profiles on the very latest advancements in knowledge and equipment. To date, there are over 13,000 such profiles in everything from Agrifood and the Environment, to Tourism and Transport. If you would like more information on the Enterprise Europe Network please contact me directly with any questions on 01 296 2263.

EU CULTURE PROGRAMME FUNDING FOR ARTISTS, ENJOYMENT FOR ALL The EU's culture programme has a budget of €400 million for the years 2007-2013. The programme aims to promote European culture, to support collobaration between artists and to encourage the greater mobility of artists and and those working in the sector. The EU Culture Fund provides grants to: small collaborations involving at least three different groups or involving links with groups in designated countries outside the EU; larger projects which have at least 6 six different partners and run for a longer time period; festivals containing works from at least 7 different member states; translation of literature into different languages. The Culture Fund provides up to 50% to 60% of the funding for these projects. in Brussels with visitors from LIT Tipperary If you would like PhilWriter Jean O’Brien, Co. Offaly presents Nessa with a copy of her work. more information, have a look at or contact me on 01 296 2263.

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KNOWLEDGE IS POWER: INTRODUCTION TO EU RESEARCH FUNDING FOR IRISH SMES The EU provides funding to public and private companies, institutions and individuals involved in research and innovation. Its purpose is to encourage and support collaborations between researchers across the European Union. The Union's research programme, known as the EU Framework Programme 2006-2013 (FP7), has a budget of over €50 billion. To date, Irish companies and third level institutions have received almost €200 million of this funding. The Irish government have set a target of over €600 million in funding for the duration of FP7. The European Commission recently announced Horizon 2020, which will be the successor to FP7 and will run from 2014-2020. This programme aims to bring all of the various supports for research under one roof where they are currently falling under the remit of seven different Commissioners. It will have a budget of over €80 billion. The most significant change announced for the new programme is a greater focus on SME participation. This involves the ring fencing of almost €7 billion for businesses and a big cut in red tape. If you would like more information on FP7 or on the Horizon 2020 programmes please don't hesitate to contact me on 01 296 2263. With students from St. Gerards at Young Vita Cortex protest in Dublin Secondary School,Bray, Co. Wicklow atPhil 2012 Scientist.

ERASMUS GIVES EU STUDENTS THE CHANCE TO TRAVEL THE WORLD! The EU's Erasmus programme pays tuition fees and provides an average support grant of over €200 per month for thirdlevel students studying abroad. The precise amount depends on the cost of living in the country in which you will be studying. As well as improving your learning experience, the programme allows students experience different cultures, learn new languages and improve social skills. It also promotes a greater understanding of being a citizen of the European Union and improves employability after graduating. Ireland receives over €5million a year to over 2,000 students travel and study in another EU country. Erasmus also brightens up the university experience at home by enabling over 5,000 European students study in Ireland. If you, or anyone you know, is interested in studying abroad contact the international office at your university or institute. Alternatively, contact me on 01 296 2263.if you want more information or have any questions whatsoever.

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EU BRINGS INVESTORS AND SMES TOGETHER The European Union provides over €1 billion, over the course of five years, to enable Small and Medium Enterprises gain access to private investment. This is done under the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme which helps new and existing SMEs develop new markets abroad, introduce new technologies, and bring products and services to the market. The Programme is administered by the European Investment Fund which uses EU money to attract private investors. At the end of 2010 they had over €14.7 billion euro in commitments from private investors. According to 2009 statistics, about 30% of this funding is used for start-up investments. These funds provide not only money, but also advice and know-how to help grow your idea. If you wish to receive investment, the first step is to submit a proposal and business plan to one of the investment funds. If you want more information or guidance on preparing an application, please contact me on 01 296 2263. Free trips abroad for youth groups - Get ready for 1000 green bottles hanging on a wall! The EU's Youth for Europe programme aims to promote understanding about the different cultures that exist across the Union, amongst people between the ages of 13 and 30. It gives young people the opportunity to spend between 6 and 21 days in another European country with a similar group of youths from that country. The programme is open to voluntary organisations, not-forprofit's and youth groups. The EU will provide up to 70% of the cost of travel and money towards preparation for the trip. This means that the remaining 30% will have to be raised by the organisation going on the trip. If you would like to get more information on how to get involved in this programme, please don't hesitate to contact me on 01 296 2263.

The EU's Leonardo da Vinci programme provides grants of up to €300,000 for small, medium and large projects. The funding can used by, for example, community groups, local partnerships and VECs. The grants promote educational experiences for trainees and teachers across the EU. The first step is to arrange a visit with similar organisations. This enables those interested in participating in Leonardo to travel and meet with like-minded potential partners. Funding covers the cost of travel, accommodation and meals for up to 5 days. Then, once you have found your partners, you can apply for funding under three categories: 1.

Funding of up to €24,000 for organisations at local, regional, national and international level to create partnerships for sharing information and expertise. The fund enables up to 24 trainees or vocational education workers to travel and share knowledge about best practice in their respective fields.


Funding of up to €300,000 for large-scale projects generally lasting two years is available to organisations working on improving training systems and spreading innovative ideas to existing projects.


Those in, or have recently graduated from, vocational education and are looking for a job can get the cost of travel, accommodation and meals for training and work experience. Trips must be arranged on a group basis and offers participants the chance to gain new insights and skills to improve their employability at home.

If your organisation would like to participate on a Leonardo programme, contact Léargas (who administer the programme in Ireland) or contact me directly on 01 296 2263 for more information.

GRUNDTVIG GIVES GRANTS TO ADULT LEARNERS AND SENIORS TO VOLUNTEER ABROAD Adults, education workers and seniors can avail of Grundtvig funding for conference fees, accommodation, meals and travel within the EU. Funding levels vary depending on the program. For instance, applicants for in-service training get €150 per day for conference fees plus free travel, accommodation and meals. In senior volunteering exchange programmes for over 50s, both organisations taking part get a lump sum grant. In this way, Grundtvig aims to enhance adult education for all those involved in the sector. The programme offers individuals and organisations a variety of opportunities under three main headings: Adults can attend workshops. Education workers can attend in-service training, workshops, exchanges and assistantships. Over-50s can volunteer abroad on projects lasting 3 – 8 weeks If you or your organisation want to take part in Grundtvig, contact Léargas (who administer the programme in Ireland) or contact me directly on 01 296 2263 for more information.

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Phil in Brussels with visitors from LIT Tipperary

Nessa Childers MEP

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EUROPEAN RURAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME ESSENTIAL FOR LOCAL JOBS The EU has provided over €2.5 billion in funding for rural development in Ireland from 2007-2013. This initiative brings MEP with then MEP, and now together various Nessa Childers Phil in Hemicycle in Brussels Minister Alan Kelly at the job march in Brussels. EU funding programmes which have the aim of increasing the standard of living and employment rates in local communities. Part 3 and 4 of the programme are similar to the old LEADER programmes and aim to promote a "bottomup" approach to local development. It does this by providing funding to small local development groups who understand the local community's needs. Total funding for this part of the Rural Development Programme for Ireland amount to just under €500 million.

EUROPEAN FISHERIES FUND AN APHRODISIAC FOR FISHERMEN? The European Fisheries Fund was set up to support fisherman as part of the Common Fisheries Policy. The current programme has a budget of over €4 billion to spend between 2007 and 2013. The total amounts going to each Member State vary depending on the size of the country's fishing fleet, the number of people working in the industry and the modernity of the sector. The Fund has four priority areas: •

Adapting the EU's fishing fleet to meet the demands of the 21st century: The EFF may co nt r i b u te to i m p rov i n g wo r k i n g conditions, the quality of products, energy yield and catch selectivity. It may also contribute towards replacing engines and helping young fishermen buy their first fishing vessel.

Promotion of inland fishing, processing and marketing: Priority in this area is given to micro and small fishing enterprises. It aims to help with the purchase and use of gear and methods that reduce the impact of aquaculture production on the environment and improve the quality of produce.

Promoting cooperation between all sectors of the fishing industry, from scientists in the lab, to ports and fishermen.


The programme is organised under eight different headings, with each heading representing a different aspect of the rural economy: • • • • • • • •

Diversification; Business development; Tourism; Services for the Rural Population; Village and Countryside Renewal; Conservation; Training; and, Co-Operation.

To find out more about how the fund is administered in Ireland, please don't hesitate to contact me on 01 296 2263.

In Munster the programme is administered on a local

WHERE ARE THE LEADER COMPANIES? basis by: Avondhue/Blackwater Integrated Company;

Ballyhoura Development Co. Ltd; IRD Duhallow; North There are 36 individual companies administering & East Kerry LEADER Partnership Teoranta; North LEADER funding throughout rural Ireland. These Tipperary LEADER Partnership Co. Ltd.; South Kerry companies used different names based on their Development Partnership Co. Ltd; South & East Cork location, and often are referred to as Integrated Local Area Dev. Partnership Ltd; South Tipperary Local Dev. Development company, LEADER company, the LEADER Co.; Waterford LEADER Partnership; West Cork partnership or the Local Action group (LAG). They all Development Partnership and West Limerick administer this particular rural development fund Resources. and must apply consistent rules for administering this money. Each LAG will have different priorities based If you information can on theirwould local like planmore and the needs of on thehow To find participate or receive fundingvisit under this programme, your local Leader Company p l e a s e d o n ' t h e s i t a t e t o c o ntact me on the-national-rural-network/making-an-application01 296 2263. for-leader-funding/

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Phil with Noreen Cooke from Presentation Secondary School Thurles at the BT Young Scientists Exhibition with

Nessa Childers MEP

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Focus on Funding  
Focus on Funding  

May 2012 newsletter, with a focus on EU Funding opportunities