As we come to the end of the year, I’d like to share an update on Empower the Family’s plans for the year ahead.
We conducted a feasibility study on 3 separate Dublin City Council owned sites during the year. Based on the results of these feasibility studies we identified an ideal site. It is located in central Ballymun, close to amenities, DCU and a bus route to numerous other colleges including TUD which is now Ireland’s largest university.
Attached here are high level outline drawings, kindly provided by Henry J Lyons pro-bono, which we presented to the council* recently. We will now be progressing to meet with Local Councillors and T.D.’s at an area committee meeting to hopefully secure the final approval required to progress with plans to develop the site.
Once we secure the site, we will begin to engage in an independent tender process for our development contractors. Attached here is a high level project timeline, very kindly provided by Lafferty pro-bono. We are an Approved Housing Body now so we can access state funding for our project. One funding option provides 100% capital grant funding for the accommodation part of our development (i.e. excluding the creche which will be funded by the donations we have received to date) but it has a 75 week application timeline. To be fair to the Department of Housing, this was much higher and they have worked very hard to cut the application timeline down. More reading on this here. Our current project timeline is based on that 75 week application process but we are exploring other viable funding options with shorter application timelines.
As the devastating images of the poverty cycle children get caught in is filling the news, I have hope that we are going to make a real difference in helping to break that cycle for many disadvantaged families in Ireland for generations to come. I’m so proud of how far we’ve come in such a short space of time, gaining our Approved Housing Body status being our biggest and most significant achievement to date. None of this would be possible without our donors and the incredible team of directors, advisors and professional service providers we have giving their time for free to help EtF achieve its vision. From the bottom of my heart, I’d like to say a very sincere thank you to everyone that has supported Empower the Family to date.
Warm wishes and Merry Christmas,
Deborah Somorin ACA, Founder Empower the Family
*Please note, small modifications have since been made, to make better use of available space.