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McCausland announces £360,000 boost for areas at risk in Newtownabbey

Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland has set aside funding of £360,000 for the Carnmoney, New Mossley and Monkstown communities in Newtownabbey.

This funding will be provided by the Northern Ireland Executive through the Department of Social Development’s Areas at Risk programme.

The Minister explained: “The Areas at Risk programme provides assistance to communities that are at risk of social or environmental decline. Initiatives which address education, health, youth and unemployment needs may be supported.

“This funding will allow residents of all ages from Carnmoney, New Mossley and Monkstown to get involved in activities to help build a stronger community which everyone can feel part of.”

Newtownabbey Borough Council is collaborating with the Department for Social Development on the delivery of the programme. The Council has recently appointed a consultant, Blueprint Development, to develop an action plan that will address identified need across the three areas.

A key element of the consultancy process will be engagement with the local communities and relevant statutory bodies to build consensus on how to optimise development opportunities presented by the availability of the funding package.

Alderman Dineen Walker, Deputy Mayor commented: "I welcome this funding announcement and look forward to the opportunities that it will create. The assistance will help build a better future for the communities in these three areas."

If you wish to be involved in the consultation process contact Newtownabbey Borough Council: Tel: 028 90 340000.

Notes to editors

1. The ‘Areas at Risk Pilot Programme’ was launched in June 2006 to provide support to communities outside the Noble 10% indicators of most disadvantaged but at risk of economic, social or environmental decline.
2. The programme focuses on building social cohesion within areas; confidence in dealing with neighbouring communities and building a wider sense of belonging.
3. Photos of the visit can be viewed later today on Flickr at http://www.flickr.com/photos/niexecutive

Belfast Telegraph