Sport Ireland reveal €7.4million investment in youth field sports

The GAA, FAI and IRFU will all receive at least €2.3million

BY Newstalk 13:17 Wednesday 13 July 2016, 13:17 13 Jul 2016

Patrick O'Donovan, Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Patrick O’Donovan TD today announced an investment package of €7.4 million from Sport Ireland, to support grass roots development in Rugby, Football and Gaelic games.

The announcement follows the €19.1m investment in National Governing Bodies, €1.8m in direct athlete investment and €5.4m to support the National Network of Local Sports Partnerships.

Announcing the package, Minister O’Donovan said: "It is important that opportunities exist for young people to participate in sport and today’s investment will support the FAI, the GAA and the IRFU in continuing their extensive participation programmes aimed at encouraging and creating more opportunities for young people to participate in field sports. This investment represents a significant contribution to our communities and to the health and well-being of our young people."

Wednesday’s announcement will see €2.4 million invested in the GAA, €2.7 million in the FAI and €2.36 million in the IRFU which will support coach development, club support, under-age programmes, volunteer support programmes, community schemes, referee development and targeting at-risk communities.

Kieran Mulvey, Chairperson of Sport Ireland explained: "We are delighted to announce this investment today. This investment supports Sport Ireland’s strategic aim of increasing participation in sport throughout Ireland. These field sports are based on a shared ethos of developing the grass roots of the games, growing participation numbers and targeting communities outside of the traditional base of the sport."

Speaking at the announcement at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus, John Treacy, CEO of Sport Ireland highlighted the importance of this investment: "Sport Ireland shares a common goal with the GAA, IRFU and FAI to increase participation in sport and physical activity. Today’s investment highlights Sport Ireland’s strategic aim of increasing participation from every age group and from all social backgrounds throughout Ireland, removing barriers that prevent participation in sport."

Senior representatives of the FAI, GAA and IRFU were in attendance at the announcement, with Philip Browne, CEO of the IRFU, adding: "The IRFU’s and Sport Ireland’s total investment into the Club and Community Game has grown in recent years to over €10million, with the IRFU allocating three euros for every euro of government funding."

John Delaney, CEO of the FAI, welcomed the investment: "Football begins in the community, it helps with the development of communities and it brings children together to play sport, and to socialise in a healthy and happy environment."

Páraic Duffy, Director General of the GAA, highlighted the impact of the investment from Sport Ireland: "The core strength of the GAA is our nationwide network of more than 2,000 clubs and the significant level of funding received from Sport Ireland helps us to make an impact at grassroots level - particularly in the promotion of our national games among young people."


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