Minister Joe O’Brien Announces Funding of €10 million for Social Inclusion Programme to Support People Arriving from Ukraine

15th December, 2022

  • Funding in addition to €44.3 million already secured for social inclusion in 2023
  • All communities supporting arrivals from Ukraine to benefit


Minister for Community Development and Charities, Joe O’Brien TD, has today, announced funding of €10 million for Local Development Companies delivering supports to people arriving from Ukraine.

The funding, allocated as part of Budget 2023, is in addition to the €44.3 million secured for the Government’s Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP) for 2023.

This funding will benefit organisations like Empower, who have helped the people of Fingal in a range areas including employment and enterprise support, English classes IT and much more.

The Social Inclusion Programme aims to reduce poverty and promote social inclusion by supporting communities and individuals in rural and urban areas. In 2021, 2,646 community groups and 26,483 individuals were assisted through the SICAP programme.

Recently, the programme has also been providing support to those fleeing war in Ukraine. The additional funding announced today ensures that normal SICAP service delivery will be maintained together with the on-the-ground response and services for people arriving from Ukraine.

As new arrivals begin to settle into community life in Ireland, this additional funding will help ensure support is available for those most in need.


Announcing the funding, Minister O’Brien said:


“Our communities have played a pivotal role in helping people arriving from Ukraine settle in to life in Ireland. State and community and voluntary services are actively responding to this unprecedented crisis, and we will also continue to need the public’s help and support.


“I am delighted to secure additional funding for the vitally important SICAP programme and its workers, who work tirelessly every day to provide supports in communities across Ireland. SICAP has made significant contributions in promoting social inclusion and equality and is making a real difference in growing communities across the country.


“Over 600 programme workers have been agile in adapting to an ever evolving situation, and their work is instrumental in helping people arriving from Ukraine adapt and integrate. This funding will enable the Local Development Companies (LDCs) to continue the vital work they are doing and direct additional resources to the delivery of SICAP.”


Minister O’Brien concluded:


“I want to thank all community workers and volunteers for their efforts this year, which has been extraordinary. The winter ahead will be a challenging one and especially so for the people of Ukraine.


“It’s important that we all continue to play our role in fostering supportive communities across Ireland by offering a warm welcome to all people seeking protection in their time of need.”





Notes to editors:

Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP 2018-2023)

  • SICAP, the government’s primary social inclusion programme, aims to reduce poverty and promote social inclusion and equality through supporting communities and individuals via community development, engagement, and collaboration.
  • SICAP supports communities and target groups to engage with relevant stakeholders developing the capacity of Local Community Groups (2646 LCGs supported in 2021) and creating more sustainable communities.
  • SICAP supports disadvantaged individuals (26,483 individuals supported in 2021) to improve the quality of their lives through the provision of lifelong learning and labour market supports.
  • Funding of over €44 million has been allocated to the programme as part of Budget 2023. An additional €10 million in funding has been secured for delivery of SICAP and the community response to support people arriving from Ukraine.
  • SICAP is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development and co-funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) under the Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning (PEIL) 2014 – 2021.
  • SICAP is managed at a local level by 33 Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs), with support from local authorities. The programme is implemented nationally by 46 Local Development Companies (LDCs) across 51 areas.
  • In June, SICAP was awarded the prestigious United Nations Public Service award in the category of “Institutional resilience and innovative responses to the COVID-19 pandemic”.
  • An increase of €1.3 million (3%) to the 2023 SICAP budget, bringing the total allocation to €44.3 million.