Theme Two – Social Inclusion, focuses on promoting the cohesion of the sub-regional area, from both an economic development and social inclusion perspective. People may be excluded and marginalised from participating in activities that are considered the norm for others in society because of inadequate income and resources. In rural areas, in particular, the low density of population, high levels of out migration and distance from urban centres, can often result in fewer employment options and lower levels of service provision than in urban areas. In rural areas, people’s experience of exclusion is often compounded by physical isolation.

This will be done through the sub themes listed below:

Provision of Basic Services Targeted at ‘Hard to Reach’ Communities

This sub-theme focuses on improving access to basic services for people living in rural and remote areas and groups who are at risk of social exclusion. In some cases, it might involve the introduction of a new service or the re-introduction of a previously withdrawn service under the following categories –
  • Community
  • Education/training
  • Social/cultural
  • Recreation

Examples of groups who may be at risk of social exclusion include, but are not limited to –

  • Those living in disadvantaged areas
  • Those living in remote and less accessible areas
  • Unemployed and underemployed people
  • Fishermen or farmers on small holdings
  • Women
  • Children
  • Lone parents
  • People with a disability
  • Older people
  • People living alone
  • NEETs (Young People who are Not in Employment, Education or Training)
  • Migrants/new communities (including refugees/asylum seekers)
  • Travellers
  • Roma

Rural Youth

The promotion of youth entrepreneurship and associated training can provide improved pathways for young people to access economic opportunities in rural areas. Actions that develop the social infrastructure of rural areas provide important opportunities for young people to realise their potential. These might include –
  • The provision of youth clubs/cafés
  • Improved access to ICT
  • Sports/recreation activities
  • Arts-based projects
  • Youth development programmes.

Young people, particularly those who may be vulnerable, also have distinct needs regarding the type of services they may need to access. For the purposes of LEADER, young people are defined as people aged 15 to 35 years.

Theme One focuses on driving continued local economic development, including diversification of the rural economy and the creation of employment opportunities for the local community, including those from disadvantaged groups.

Theme Two focuses on promoting the cohesion of the sub-regional area, from both an economic development and social inclusion perspective.

Theme Three seeks to maximise the potential of environmental actions to contribute to the sustainable development of rural communities. It focuses on utilising the landscape within a local area, while simultaneously creating a greater environmental awareness and improving environmental protection.

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