GCCN News 2020
9th September 

Welcome to this edition of GCCN Network News.
Below we have information on:

GCCN Network News

GCCN Updates & Reminders Funding, Bursaries, Awards
  • National Integration Fund 2020 - read here
  • Coca-Cola Thank You Fund: Supporting Youth Groups - read here
  • Charity Impact Awards - read here
  • Artist in the Community Scheme Bursary Award 2020: Collaborative Arts and Human Rights  - read here
  • Open Call for Pollution Related Projects - read here
  • Age & Opportunity Active National Grant Scheme 2020 - read here
  • HSE 2020 National Lottery Grant Scheme - read here
Have Your Say
  • Public Consultation on EU Citizenship Rights - read here
  • Review of Galway City Council Arts Strategy 2020-2025 - read here
  • Nominate an Older Person Active in the Community - Positive Ageing Week 2020  - read here
  • Reduce Unwanted Pregnancies: AAC West Petition - read here
Events and Initiatives
  • Mad, Bad and Dangerous: A Celebration of ‘Difficult’ Women - read here
  • Ageing Voices: Singing for Better Health and Wellbeing in Older Life - read here

COVID-19 Related Updates

  • Public Health Measures Update  - read here
  • Message from Covid-19 Stakeholder Communications Support: 7th September - read here
  • Support for the Elderly in the Coming Months - read here
  • COVID-19 Nursing Homes Expert Panel: Final Report  - read here
  • Bringing Back the Sleep Routine during COVID-19: Online Resource  - read here
  • €2 billion COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme: Low-Cost Loans for SMEs - read here

GCCN Network News
GCCN Updates & Reminders
GCCN Linkage Group Meetings
September 2020

In advance of the two meetings of the Environment SPC and Housing SPC as listed in the reminder below, GCCN will hold Linkage Group meetings open to all members and non-members as follows:

Linkage Group Date Zoom Registration
Housing and Accommodation
September 22th

Register here
Environment, Climate Change, Planning, Transport, Heritage, Recreation and Amenity Thursday
September 24th

Register here

For queries or if you wish to submit any appropriate suggestions for consideration for any of the upcoming meetings please contact
Upcoming SPC/JPC Meetings
September 2020

The following local structures will meet in September as follows:

SPC/LCDC Date Check the links below for details and documentation
JPC Subcommittee 4 Meeting Wednesday
16th September
Read more here
Housing and Social Inclusion SPC Meeting Friday
25th September
Read more here
Climate Action, Environment, Recreation & Amenity SPC Tuesday
29th September
Read more here
If you wish to submit any appropriate suggestions for consideration for any of the upcoming meetings please contact
Funding, Bursaries, Awards
National Integration Fund 2020 
Supporting Communities to Promote the Integration of Migrants and their Children
Closing Date: 22 September

The National Integration Fund 2020 is open for applications from both public and private bodies until September 22nd. €749,600 per year over a maximum of three years will be made available for projects that help migrants integrate into Irish society.
The National Integration Fund 2020 is a key element of the Migrant Integration Strategy 2017-2020. The Strategy was developed to enable migrants, or persons of migrant origin, to participate on an equal basis with those of Irish heritage. Its primary objective is to ensure that barriers to full participation in Irish society by migrants or their Irish-born children are identified and addressed.
How to apply
Applicants can access a detailed guidance document and complete an online application form at:
The closing date for applications is 12pm, Tuesday 22 September 2020.
Further detail are available at this link here.
Coca-Cola Thank You Fund
Supporting Youth Groups

Every year, the  Coca-Cola Thank You Fund gives back to local Irish non-profit organisations, helping them fund projects that matter to their communties. 
In 2020, the Coca-Cola Thank You Fund is making €50,000 available to projects supporting youth groups most impacted by COVID-19 across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Any organisation – big or small – aimed at helping people aged 16-25 transition out of isolation in their local area can enter. Visit to view entry guidelines.
Charity Impact Awards
Closing Date: 2nd October

The Wheel’s Charity Impact Awards are open for application from 1st September to 2nd October 2020. The Charity Impact Awards celebrates the work of charities, community groups and voluntary organisations that have changed Ireland for the better. In 2020, there are 4 Award Categories: Charity Impact Award, Social Enterprise of the Year, Charity Trustee of the Year and a special Community Hero Award. Visit for more details.
Artist in the Community Scheme Bursary Award 2020
Collaborative Arts and Human Rights
Closing Date: 9th November

Create is delighted to announce the second Artist in the Community Scheme Bursary Award 2020: Collaborative Arts and Human Rights, in partnership with the Irish Council for Civil Liberties. This bursary aims to support individual professional artists working in collaborative socially engaged arts practice. The Bursary is funded by the Arts Council's Artist in the Community Scheme, managed by Create. 

The purpose of the award is to support and nurture professional arts practice; it is specifically aimed at an artist with a track record of working collaboratively with communities of place or interest in the context of human rights. The bursary of €10,000 provides the selected artist with time and resources to carry out research and to reflect and engage with and reflect on their practice. More particularly, it allows the artist to consider key questions associated with human rights using collaborative methodologies.

The closing date for applications to this bursary is the 9th November 2020. Full details, guidelines and application forms can be found on the Create website.

Open Call for Pollution Related Projects
Closing Date: November 1st

ACTION is looking for ongoing citizen science projects related to any form of pollution in Europe and worldwide, that are primarily carried out online.
Successful applicants will receive €20,000 to help deliver a six-month pilot with the help of the ACTION team. ACTION will provide funding for a six-month pilot, alongside dedicated acceleration activities, resources and tools to set up and run the pilot. 
For more information:

Age & Opportunity Active National Grant Scheme 2020
Closing Date: 2nd October

The Age & Opportunity Active National Grant Scheme offers financial supports – provided by Sport Ireland – to local clubs, groups and organisations, nationwide who promote increased participation in recreational sport or physical activity for older people. It aims to assist in the implementation of locally developed, well-planned activity and sport initiatives.
The deadline for applications for this year’s allocation is 12 noon Friday 2nd October 2020.
 HSE 2020 National Lottery Grant Scheme
For Community Groups and Voluntary Organisations
The HSE 2020 National Lottery grant scheme is now open for community groups and voluntary organisations and the closing date is 12 noon on September 18th 2020.   
Find further details on
Have your Say
 Public Consultation on EU Citizenship Rights
Closing Date: 1st October

By the end of the year, the Commission plans to publish its next Citizenship Report. Placing the citizen at the heart of the policy efforts, the report will take stock of the progress made since the 2017 EU Citizenship Report, collect lessons learned from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on EU citizenship rights and propose new priorities and actions aimed at bringing concrete benefits to EU citizens in terms of effectively enjoying their EU citizenship rights, in particular in a cross-border context.
You are encouraged to contribute to the public consultation on EU citizenship rights, which aims at collecting information, experiences and views on EU citizenship rights and will be open until 1 October 2020. 
Together with the Flash Eurobarometer on EU Citizenship and Democracy, its results will inform the Citizenship Report and help set the agenda on EU citizenship rights.
EU citizenship, as a unique construct at the global level, is one of the most significant achievements of the European project. The practical enjoyment of rights, such as the right to vote, study, work or live in other EU Member States, affect the daily life of all Europeans and their protection and promotion is key to the Commission’s work. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated even more the importance of these rights.
If you do not have an EU login, please go to the EU login page by entering the following address in the browser: Then, click on Create an account and fill in the blanks with the details for your account. More information on EU login and help can be found here:

Review of 
Galway City Council Arts Strategy
Closing Date: 25th September

The planning process to inform Galway City Arts Strategy 2020-2025 is under way. The strategy will set out the main goals and objective for arts development and provide a policy framework to guide Galway City Council’s investment in the arts in the medium-term. 
The contribution of Artists (in all art-forms), Arts Practitioners, Arts Venues, Festivals and Organisations and interested parties is being sought in order to fully inform the preparation of the Arts Strategy.

To have your say:

  • Complete the Online Arts Questionnaire at: To preview the questions included in the online questionnaire go here. Please do not use this file to make your submission.
  • Or make a written submission to: Galway City Arts Office, City Hall, College Road, Galway, H91 X4K8.
The closing date is 5pm on Friday the 25th September 2020.
For further details go here.
Do You Know an Older Person Active in the Community?
Positive Ageing Week 2020 
September 28th – October 2nd, 2020

A number of agencies here in Galway (COPE Galway, Galway Contact, Age Action, Westside Age Inclusion , Croi Na Gaillimhe, St Vincent de Paul) are coming together for Positive Ageing Week (September 28th - October 2nd) to shine a light on all the positive contributions of older people and to create a buzz in the city and county which highlights positivity of older people.

One of the aspects of the campaign is to identify and showcase a number of older people in our communities who we know to be active contributors to friends, family, neighbourhoods and/or communities and who epitomise healthy and active ageing. Their contribution would be captured in a short bio written up about them, a photograph and permission to use this in the media.
If you know someone who is active in their community and would be interested in taking part please contact Jacquie Horan in COPE Galway at as soon as possible.

For further details read the Campaign Proposal here.
Reduce Unwanted Pregnancies
AAC West Petition
Abortion Access Campaign West (AAC West) are inviting interested people to sign a petition in support of their Budget 2021 Submission. The petition is directed to the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly and it is requesting to Reduce Unwanted Pregnancies - make all forms of contraception available for FREE to all in 2020
Visit the petition at the link here.
A Working Group on Access to Contraception was established by the Minister for Health in April 2019 to consider the range of policy, regulatory and legislative issues arising in relation to improving access to contraception. Its report was published in October 2019.  The group clearly found that barriers to ‘accessing contraception do exist for some people, with the most prevalent obstacles identified as lack of local access, cost, embarrassment, inconvenience and lack of knowledge.’ Also, that the ‘weight of research evidence and the contributions from stakeholders are persuasive as to the potential beneficial health impacts of providing people, especially women, with the opportunity to choose the most effective and suitable type of contraception for them based on their health and lifestyle needs and preferences.’
Events and Initiatives
 Mad, Bad and Dangerous
A Celebration of ‘Difficult’ Women
Given the connection with Galway and the online nature of this event, we share here information on Mad, Bad and Dangerous: a celebration of ‘difficult’ women, a series of recorded conversations between influential Irish women in the public eye who are over 70 years of age which will premiere online this September as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival, and Bealtaine Festival this October.  
DATES: Dublin Fringe: 15 & 17 September
Bealtaine Festival: 20 & 22 October
TIME: 19:00
TICKETS: Free to view online @
Of the women featured in the 4-episode series some are artists, writers, film-makers, some are political leaders and cultural change-makers, some are human rights and environmental activists, sociologists, anthropologists, one has been shot and some have been jailed. These once-in a lifetime conversations between these women cannot be missed.
Ageing Voices 
Singing for Better Health and Wellbeing in Older Life
Sing Ireland, the national group singing support agency and Creative Aging International have been supported under Creativity in Older Age Programme to produce resources and best practice training programmes for musicians and carers working with older people.
Over the next few months, starting with the questionnaire below, the project will set out to:
  • Map where adults sing, why they sing, and who supports this;
  • Create and then offering tools and training;
  • Share great examples to show what singing groups are doing.
The digital form in the link below will establish information about singing in your area:
If you know groups or individuals leading singing in your local area, Sing Ireland would love to hear from you.
In these challenging times Sing Ireland is working with national partners on risk assessment and the measures that must be employed to ensure that singing can take place safely during Covid-19. For further information on the steps and statements Sing Ireland has made on this please visit their website here.
COVID-19 Related Updates

Public Health Measures
As you know, we are seeing some increases in rate of COVID around the country, and as a result, some additional advice and restrictions have been recommended by NPHET and the Government. These measures aim to protect our priorities – caring for vulnerable people and keeping health services open. You can view the national public health measures here.

Message from Covid-19 Stakeholder Communications Support
Monday, 7th September 2020 

Dear Colleague,

We hope this message finds you well.

We are grateful for your continuing support in helping to share information about COVID-19. Below are a few communications updates for you.

Public Health Measures
The special health measures that were in place in Kildare were lifted on the 31st August. We are, however, still experiencing some increases in the rate of COVID around the country. Advice and restrictions are continuously being reviewed with recommendations being made by NPHET and the Government. These measures aim to protect our priorities – caring for vulnerable people, keeping health services open and getting children back to education.

You can view the latest national public health measures here.

Protecting your Child from COVID-19
COVID-19 can affect children as well as adults, but cases of coronavirus are much less common in children. Children generally get a milder infection than adults or older people. Often, they have no symptoms. Children have rarely been the person who brought coronavirus into a household when household spread has happened. They are less likely than adults to spread infection to other people. You can find out more about protecting your child from coronavirus here.

For more information and resources for schools and parents, please see:

For more information on protecting your child from COVID-19, please see:

Updated COVID-19 Advice Posters for Entering a Building, GP Surgery or Pharmacy
Updated posters have been created and can be used by GP surgeries, pharmacies and other buildings/places where visitors should be alerted not to enter if they have COVID-19 symptoms. The posters are available under the ‘Posters’ drop down menu available here.

Alternatively, you can access the posters directly from the following links:

COVID-19 Video for Members of the Roma Community
A new video has been made for members of the Roma Community explaining what to do if travelling into Ireland from another country.

Escape Your Chair Campaign
The Irish Heart Foundation’s Escape Your Chair Heart Month campaign supported by HSE Health & Wellbeing is calling on the nation to Escape Your Chair by moving for a minute each hour during the day. A survey conducted by Ipsos MRBI in early August found that more than half of all Irish workers are now working from home, with 53% of them sitting down for longer than when they commuted to work. While one in four are remaining sedentary for at least three hours longer than when they commuted to work.  The evidence shows that being sedentary for long periods of time increases your risk of developing heart disease.

For more information about the campaign visit: and for tips about maintaining a healthy heart while working from home go to:

New Emergency Card Scheme for Family Carers
Family Carers Ireland
 (FCI), in partnership with An Garda Siochana, the National Ambulance Service Community First Responder Schemes, The Irish Red Cross and The Order of Malta has developed a new Emergency Card Scheme for family carers.  If a family carer is involved in an accident, has an unplanned hospital admission or is suddenly taken ill, there is a risk that the person who needs their care and support could be left at home alone and uncared for. The Emergency Card Scheme (free to family carers with access to a 24/7 emergency helpline) is intended to give peace of mind to family carers as well as ensuring that the person they care for remains safe in such emergencies. It involves completion of an Emergency Care plan by the family carer including nominating two people (family members/friends) to take over their caring role in such an emergency and the issuing by FCI of an Emergency Card to family carers who sign up to the scheme. Where a family carer cannot nominate two people or where their nominated person cannot be reached in the event of an emergency then FCI will link with other agencies/service providers and/or emergency services to ensure a care plan is put in place for the cared for person.

To download the Emergency Care Plan please click on the following link or for more details on the scheme please go to or call Family Carer’s Ireland Freephone Careline 1800 24 07 24. The scheme is kindly supported by Irish Life and the dormant accounts fund.

Public Health Information:
As always, for the most up to date information and advice on Coronavirus, please go to: and Clinical and professional guidance relating to COVID-19 is available on where you’ll find up to date guidance for healthcare settings and non-clinical settings. Please also check here for the most up to date partner resources for COVID-19.

If your organisation has any specific requests in relation to COVID-19 public health information materials, please email us to let us know. ​

We wish you good health and wellness.

Many thanks,
Covid-19 Health Communications Stakeholder Support

Support for the Elderly in the Coming Months
With the winter months approaching, we would like to share once again some of the main helplines for Older people to access, especially during the ongoing COVID-19 alert.
  • Galway City COVID-19 Community Call Helpline: 1800 400 150
  • COPE Galway Helpline: 085  87 67 785
  • Alone Helpline: 0818 222 024
  • Senior Line: 1800 804 591
We highly encourage you to share these numbers with any older person you know.
COVID-19 Nursing Homes Expert Panel
Final Report 

The COVID-19 Nursing Homes Expert Panel report contains a range of recommendations aimed at safeguarding the residents in nursing homes over the next 12-18 months and into the longer term. The report can be downloaded here.
Bringing Back the Sleep Routine during COVID-19 
Online Resource 

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many families have lost a sense of routine and parents have said that getting this routine right is the key to making a start on improving other unhealthy behaviours. Sleep is the cornerstone to health and wellbeing and its impact on a healthy lifestyle cannot be underestimated.
The START campaign is a public health awareness campaign from Safefood, the HSE and Healthy Ireland which promotes healthy behaviours. You can find more information on
€2 billion COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme
Low-Cost Loans for SMEs

A new €2 billion COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme was recently announced for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). This will provide Irish businesses, including those in the farming and fishing sectors, with access to low-cost loans as they respond to the impacts of COVID-19. Read more here.

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