Continued funding for Libraries in Laois and Offaly
I'm delighted to see €43,000 in funding across Laois and Offaly under the Dormant Accounts Action Plan which compliments over €3.1m announced recently by my Ministerial colleague, Minister Humphreys, for major expansion of My Open Library.
This funding is coming to Laois and Offaly due the the innovative Library staff who identified inclusive projects for a broad range of library users.
The funded projects are designed to reach out to children and parents, the elderly, people with disabilities, Ukrainian families and other marginalised members of our communities and include projects like;
The installation of a 'Tovertafel', an age friendly, interactive console designed for use by older people, people with dementia, autistic people, people with disabilities and people with mobility needs.
A STEAM project to promote science and technology amongst primary school children in DEIS school areas..
It is wonderful to see funding of €9,270.00 for projects designed to reach out to Ukrainian families within our communities. This project offers a series of literacy, arts and cultural events targeting the migrant community. Poetry and debating workshops for teenagers will be hosted celebrating migrant writers and artists. This funding will also go towards providing library stock and resources in different languages. I know that this funding will be very positively received among the Ukrainian community in Laois and Offaly. My team have been working with displaced Ukrainians in the community and they tell us that their local libraries are essential as a quiet place where they can go to relax, read and study. Libraries are also the only place where some Ukrainians can access computers, which is important for communications, study and accessing online English courses.
I am also delighted to see €6,525 for a collaborative project between both counties’ library services included in this announcement. This project offers a programme for parents of young people with additional needs, literacy needs, LGBTQ+ young people and residents of deprived areas. The programme consists of a free series of talks/workshops from expert professionals in the field of parenting and will take place in person and online via Zoom and includes support for parents at every stage of their children’s development.
These are only a small number of the vast array of services that your local library offers.
This Government is supporting libraries to be central to communities, to be welcoming and inclusive venues for exploration, creativity and information. I encourage everyone to get out and see what your library has to offer you in Laois and Offaly.
Find your local library here;