St Johnston and Carrigans Donegal



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·        To manage and develop a multi-purpose Family Resource Centre where people from the area can come together in groups to pursue their own development and that of their community.


·        To extend and enhance the existing facilities for the delivery of a range of programmes and activities.


·        To design and deliver a range of programmes for young people and children.


·        To provide education and training for the re-skilling of people, to enable them to enter or re-enter the workforce, particularly women & long-term unemployed.


·        To provide information, programmes and services to promote health and well being within the family and community.


·        To improve early years development of children under the age of 5 years.


·        To improve the involvement of the elder population in the activities of the community and provide a forum for greater interaction between young and old for the mutual benefit of all the community.


·        To sustain and develop social and recreational activities for the elderly and socially excluded.


·        To promote environmental awareness: to promote pride and interest in the improvement and maintenance of the local and global environment.


·        To further develop and promote the neighbourhood approach to Community work.


·        To campaign & lobby for an effective public transport service for the area.




 St. Johnston & Carrigans Resource Group was established in 1995 by a number of local people who were concerned about the lack of facilities and opportunities for employment, training and educational opportunities within the community. The formation of the initial group and the work that followed was to lay the foundations for a number of significant developments that would reinvigorate and transform the social and community landscape of the St Johnston & Carrigans area. Through carrying out a needs analysis within the area , the group developed a plan which would begin to address the needs of the community. The plan which was developed contained two key strategic actions which would progress the overarching aim of providing information, support and providing employment education and training to those most marginalized within the community. This part of the plan involved applications to the Department of Social & family Affairs to become a Family Support Agency and to FAS Training & Employment Agency to become Community Employment Sponsors.  Both of these applications were successful and have become important and essential elements in the day to day running of the overall project and the advancement of the key aims and objectives of St Johnston & Carrigans Resource Group.


In November 2000, their first CE Project began with 11 participants.  Now in 2009, as a Family Resource Centre with a CE Project of 19 participants, it is a focal point and catalyst for community development in the area.  The CE Project expanded in 2007-08 to include 4 workers based at the Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative. (See Sponsoring History in Section C).


As we approach a new Community Employment term, the management committee of St Johnston & Carrigans Community Employment Project are aware of the challenging times we are all facing in terms of funding to maintain the high level of support, training and education required to meet the increasing demand for support , employment, education and training.  In light of the economic downturn and the increasing number of people now on the live register the Community Employment scheme is needed more than ever as it can provide people with the opportunity to access employment and training.




The needs of the local community of St. Johnston & Carrigans were assessed in a major community survey in 1999. High unemployment and high rates of early school leaving were identified, with long-term unemployment prevalent. This is still the case today, as was confirmed more recently by statistics compiled by various agencies. The Newtowncunningham Community Survey in 2007 found similar patterns of disadvantage. (See Section E)


The St. Johnston & Carrigans Community Employment Project aims to address this by offering further education and supported employment opportunities for adults, here in the community and through local further education centres. As part of this, we are fully committed to facilitating training and educational opportunities for CE workers, so that they can build up their self-confidence and progress into full-time education or employment. 


The CE Project in the communities of St Johnston, Carrigans and Newtoncunningham is greatly needed as a pathway and signposting back to education and employment for local people.



The uptake of training by our CE participants has been consistently high. There is a culture in the Family Resource Centre of encouraging and supporting participants to avail of the opportunities for further education and training that are on offer. (See details in Section H)  The NCDI has been similarly supportive of its CE workers and encourages training and development for all participants.


The Community Employment Project is a vital resource in providing staff to both St Johnston & Carrigans FRC and Newtoncunningham Development Initiative, which enables us to operate and deliver a quality service and to provide programmes, information and support to meet a wide range of local needs.  (See Section E)  Without the CE Project, we would be greatly restricted and limited in the facilities, activities and services, which we could offer. We hope to continue to work in partnership with FÁS to offer a CE Project in our area for many years to come.




St Johnston & Carrigans Family Resource Centre was established in 1995 by local people who wanted to address the social, educational needs of this area.  The core priority of creating opportunities and enabling of people to access employment through the community employment project continues to be one of the underpinning aims of the group.


 In 2000, St Johnston & Carrigans Family Resource Centre opened its doors, and over the past nine years have been instrumental in facilitating and developing a huge level of programmes, which has transformed the community, social and educational infrastructure of the St Johnston & Carrigans area.  In November 2000 of that year, the Resource Group became FÁS CE Sponsors, and employed one supervisor and eleven CE participants who provide important staffing roles within the centre.  The Community Employment Project has provided an effective response to the lack of opportunity for employment in the local area.  In November 2007, the CE Project expanded to include four workers based in the Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative.  This partnership with NCDI has continued to develop through 2008-09 with both projects working consistently to further the aims and objectives of their respective projects. In 2009, NCDI moved office, a development that was assisted by the community employment participants.





















19  (15 in St. Johnston & Carrigans, 4 in Newtowncunningham)


19  ( 15 participant St Johnston& Carrigans 4 participants based in Newtoncunningham)



In March 2002, St Johnston & Carrigans FRC were approved onto the Family Resource Programme, with core funding from the Department of Social & Family Affairs. The project has continued to grow and develop through maximizing every opportunity to progress their aims and objectives.


In 2003  the project was successful in accessing funding under the Programme for Peace & Reconciliation (Peace 11) to employ a full-time Youth Worker and part-time administrator from 2003-06.  Since 2007 the CE Project Youth Workers, with the guidance and support of the FRC and playgroup staff have played a key role in providing a programme of activities to children and young people in the St Johnston & Carrigans area.


Since 2002, staffing levels within the FRC project have increased through funding made available by the Family Support Agency under the Dept. of Social & Family Affairs. In 2003, the administrator’s role was extended to full time and in November 2007, a full time Community Development Outreach Worker was recruited. The FRC team, which consists of the Voluntary Management Committee, a Project Coordinator, Administrator and Community Development Outreach Worker work closely with the Community Employment Supervisor in the planning and management of the CE Programme. 




Job Titles 2009/10 Project

Based in St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC:

Environmental workers                      4          Secretary                                      1

I.T. Support Worker                         1          Youth activity workers               4

Caretaker                                          1          Childcare workers                        3

Cleaner/Housekeeper                        1          Centre Receptionists                   2

Support Worker for Older People    1         

Based in Newtowncunningham CDI:

Environmental Worker                     1         Youth Worker                              1

IT Worker & Publishing Assistant   1         Grounds person/Caretaker           1

Childcare Worker                             1

Total Community Employment places being applied for;                  23


Skills to be developed on the Project:


Participants will gain direct training and experience through working directly with other staff, which are suitable qualified in their areas of work and possess a high level of skills and expertise in their particular fields.

Within the Family Resource Centre programme, the Community employment participants will work closely with key workers and volunteers who will provide mentoring and on going support to encourage and support the worker to develop the necessary skills to carry out their own respective role within the FRC. Induction packs and helpful information will be provided where appropriate.  For example, the CE administrator will receive training and induction from the FRC administrator in the first few weeks to enable the new worker to learn about the duties and tasks required to carry out their role. Support will continue through the length of the project to ensure that the worker will receive the appropriate level of support to develop their skills and maximize the opportunity for progression: childcare workers will benefit from the day-to-day support and supervision of a trained and experienced Playgroup staff.  They will learn and be encouraged through shadowing and observing best practice, to develop practical techniques for working directly with pre schoolchildren and encouraging child-development.  They will be involved in planning and review sessions with the childcare team, which will enable them to take a participatory role in the delivery of the childcare facilities and programmes.


Similarly, an environmental worker who has had no experience of joinery or gardening could learn some basic skills in these areas through assisting another worker who may have been doing this kind of work all his life.  This support will be available and ongoing to all CE participants in the Family Resource Centre and the NCDI. Management and staff in both projects are supportive environments in which people who have been out of work for some time, or who have never worked in a formal setting can learn the basic routines of working life, for example, the importance of good timekeeping and attendance. We would help people become accustomed to this, so that at the end of the year, they would have the skills to embark on job seeking and possibly secure and hold onto a job.


Formal Skills Training:


St Johnston & Carrigans FRC and NCDI have an excellent record in the delivery of a wide range of training and education within their community.  In terms of formal skills training, participants will be supported to undertake in-house courses at various levels of Computer Applications, using the excellent computer training facilities in either centre.  Tutors can be brought in to deliver training in a wide range of personal development, job-seeking skills, or any type of academic course.


Since 2007 FAS have developed Fetac accredited training modules in a wide range of subjects. These are now being made available to all CE participants in-house and at other venues.


 In 2009 St Johnston & Carrigans FRC received recognition as a certified Centre for Learning having achieved standards for the delivery of Third level education courses  from Tuath & Letterkenny Institute of Technology. The Centre now has excess to technology such as digital projector, screens and two video conferencing units which will eventually facilitate distance learning in a wide range of training and educational establishments both in Ireland and the UK.   


The proximity of colleges of Further and Higher Education in Derry, Strabane and Letterkenny provides a wide range of training opportunities, which would give people the skills they need to progress into employment. The Supervisor attends monthly meetings with the network of  FÁS CE Supervisors in the Finn Valley area.  These meetings can be used to co-ordinate joint training programmes, such as Lawnmower & Strimmer Maintenance.  Participants from different projects can be brought together to make a viable group for a particular piece of training that might not otherwise be available.  

·        For a more detailed account of work experience, support & training having being available to participants on our project and how this will assist in progression.






“Our Mission is to seek to improve the quality of personal and family life for all members of the community by encouraging active participation in community, social, health and educational programmes and supports.”






The need for the Community Employment Project is now greater than ever. It can provide the valuable pathway to employment , education and reskilling in a supportive and effective way which values experiential learning and promotes the ethos and principles of Life Long Learning.


The Area


The villages of St Johnston & Carrigans are situated in East Donegal interfacing with the northern border counties of Derry and Tyrone. The villages lie two miles apart along the scenic banks of the River Foyle. St Johnston has a population of 1,227 and Carrigans 1,547 (under Killea DED) with a considerable concentration living in rural locations. The area is isolated due to it’s natural geographical location along the border which is further compounded by incredibly weak infrastructure in terms of the lack of public transport provision, poor roads, social housing and difficulties in accessing essential support services such as health financial, legal ect.  In the past few years, the area has undergone dramatic population changes with the development of new private housing developments particularly in the Carrigans area which has led to a significant increase in the population of both villages. The new homes are mostly occupied by families from across the border in Derry and Tyrone or are investment rental properties that have been let out to local people who are on the council housing waiting list.


Demographic Profile



St. Johnston & Carrigans *


* The figures used in this section are not completely representative of the population of St. Johnston, Carrigans and surrounding areas. The statistics used are a result of data collated on the different District Electoral Divisions (DEDs). The town of St. Johnston is a DED, while Carrigans comes under the DED of Killea; therefore, statistics relating to Carrigans also refer to the neighbouring village of Killea. The St. Johnston DED does not include other townlands which are self defined as being part of the St. Johnston area which means that statistics do not encompass the entire population served by the FRC.


According to Haase & Pratschke (2005) and their analysis of the 2002 Census, St. Johnston was described as an area which was disadvantaged in terms of demographic decline, which can be manifested in agricultural underemployment or emigration (‘which leaves behind aging populations with greater economic dependency rates and frequently with lower levels of education’) (Haase & Pratschke, 2005, p. 7).


Areas which experience Demographic Decline tend to enter a downward spiral where they become increasingly less attractive for new firms and investments. Furthermore… existing services such as transport, banks, post offices and shops have increasing difficulty merely in justifying their existence, adding further to the sense of deprivation experienced by the communities concerned.

(Haase & Pratschke, 2005, pp. 7-8)


Killea was described as having marginally below average demographic decline and social class disadvantage while St. Johnston was also described as a disadvantaged area in terms of social class disadvantage. Both St. Johnston and Killea were described as ‘severely disadvantaged’ with relation to Labour Market Deprivation. Both St. Johnston and Killea were categorised as having a deprivation score of between -30 to -20 in 1991 (defined as ‘very disadvantaged’ when the national average was 0. In 2002 St. Johnston and Killea were described as having a deprivation score of between -10 and 0, with the national average being 15. In terms of relative deprivation scores from the 2002 Census, St. Johnston is defined as very disadvantaged while Killea is defined as disadvantaged.


            These statistics all point to serious issues affecting the community in terms of demographic decline, social class disadvantage and high levels of deprivation, with these issues reflected in information from the 2006 Census. According to the 2006 Census, St. Johnston had a population of 1,227 people (608 males and 619 females) while the Killea DED had a population of 1,547 (789 males and 758 females), which is a joint population of 2,774 people. Of this population, 658 people were aged between 0-14 years, with 426 people aged between 15-24. This high youth population of 1,084 means that young people make up 39.8% of the population of the area. There were 229 people aged over 65 years of age between the two DEDs which means that older people account for 8.25% of the population. Although this figure is lower than the county average of 12.6%, it does raise issues around the provision of services for older people in a rural area without a proper transport system. The high youth population and number of older people in the area comprise 48% of the population of the area.


            With regard to employment, between the two DEDs, 50.5% of people over 15 years of age were at work, with 54% of people in Killea at work, while in St. Johnston 46% were  of the population over 15 years of age were at work. 8.7% of the population of the two DEDs were unemployed, 10% were retired, 10.25 % were students and 13.33% classified themselves as looking after the home or family. 5.3% of the population were classified as being unable to work due to permanent sickness or disability. Lone parent families represent 35% of the household in the St Johnston & Carrigans area.


            In relation to early school leaving, 219 young people aged 15 years or under in Killea, and 177 young people 15 years or under in St. Johnston were classified as having ceased their education. This translates as 396 young people, 15 years or under, as having left school early. In terms of the overall population between the two DEDs, 14.3% of the population were 15 years or under and had ceased their education. In addition, 320 young people aged 16 had ceased their education, and 168 young people aged 17 had also ended their full time education. 884 young people (31.9% of overall population) aged 17 years or under had ceased their full time education by 2006.


            These figures strengthen the thesis that Donegal, and particular St. Johnston and Carrigans (Killea) are disadvantaged areas and this is reflected in the fact that St. Baithins National School, St. Johnston has been designated as a Disadvantaged Primary school by the Department of Education & Science (DETE, 2006, p. 81). Both secondary schools in Raphoe, which tend to be the main progression routes for secondary education for many young people in the area, had been designated as Disadvantaged Post Primary schools (DETE, 2006, p. 82).


            Compounding the issues around unemployment, early school leaving and poor transport are a lack of social and affordable housing. The population increase in both St. Johnston and Killea area has not brought a correlating increase in social housing to cater for the needs of the community and as a result, there are 71 family units in the St. Johnston area on the County Council housing waiting list, 40 of these families have children. In Carrigans, there are 38 families on the housing waiting list, while in Killea, 16 families are on the housing list (Donegal County Council, 2008)


Research conducted by the Family Resource Centre in 1999 highlighted the issues of unemployment and early school leaving, alongside:


-           Poor service infrastructure- the area has a poor service infrastructure in         particular roads, housing, water and sewerage. The area also lacks a financial           institution (Credit union, bank or building society), a secondary school or a             pharmacy.

-           Transport- the lack of a proper transport service has contributed         significantly to the rural isolation and marginalisation of this community. The only bus route available is a twice daily Derry to Ballybofey (via Raphoe).            The service to Lifford or Letterkenny which are the main urban centres, runs twice a week. 66.1% of people surveyed were unhappy with the bus service in the area.

-           Car Ownership

-           Poor housing


While these issues were named as being problematic in 1999, many members of the community are still affected by them. It is envisioned that the FRCs proposed community audit will look at these and additional issues, researching the current needs of the community in St. Johnston and Carrigans, with the findings from this audit informing the work of the FRC.




The data provided below under a number of headings is compiled both from local and secondary research (CSO, Department of Social & family Affairs statistics unit etc) The NCDI Committee delivered 650 surveys to each house in Newtowncunningham and 381 surveys (58.46%) were completed and returned.  There were a total of 1274 people resident in these 381 households



There is a high level of dependency on social welfare payments, most commonly unemployment payments. The level of unemployment in the area is high, 189 persons receiving jobseekers allowance/benefit.



A massive 26% of the total population of the three areas left school before the age of 15years. With 15% leaving with only primary school education, there is a serious problem in these areas with literacy especially among the 40 and upwards age group.   In the 2006 census figures showed that 1628 persons that were employed were classed as semi skilled and unskilled. That is a massive 25% of the total population. Of these there was 545 involved in the farming industry and 352 are own account workers.



In the three areas there are 328 children within 277 family units being parented alone with either a mother or father. That is 18% of the total family units are parenting alone. There are 48 persons receiving lone parents allowance at the local post office however as many again receives their allowance though the bank it is hard to verify the numbers.



There are a high percentage of persons with a disability, 404 registered as disabled, with 113 persons or 22% being under the age of 45.


·        TRANSPORT

There is a bus service in the town however it is not adequate as it does not run to accommodate workers or those who have to travel for health or hospital appointments. The nearest hospital is 15miles away in Letterkenny, with dentists and other services in the same location.  For those in isolated in rural areas which is the majority of the population it is extremely difficult to get into town to visit the doctor, chemist or post office. They have to use a taxi service which is quite limited and costly.





Car ownership is often used as an indicator of affluence but in rural settings where transport infrastructures are very limited, car ownership is a necessity and indeed frequently a drain in already overstretched resources.  The total number of homes without a car is 225 or 14%, those with only one car numbers 720 or 45% of households. This means that if we take even half of this number, due to one person taking the car to work, 34% of people are without a car during the day which leaves them isolated and confined to home.



While those registered unemployed are mainly men, a representative from the Department of Social & Family Affairs told us that there is a high level of hidden unemployment in the county.  Female dependents of these men are not on the register, but would like to work if barriers such as lack of suitable childcare and transport were removed.  Lack of confidence and employable skills are further barriers.




St. Johnston & Carrigans Community Employment Project has been working closely and strategically with local people to respond to local needs.  The staffing of the Resource Centre by FÁS Community Employment  workers has been instrumental in creating innovative opportunities aimed at bringing people back into the education system to retrain and reskill people for entry into the job market. .

  • The building of the Resource Centre, incorporating a purpose-built Health Centre, has provided a focal point for community development in the area.  It has initiated and facilitated many initiatives undertaken by local groups to improve the social and economic life of the area, as well as for the programmes being developed by the Resource Group itself.  It has brought a sense of new possibilities to the area and local people are justly proud of it.  Groups such as the local Fishermen’s Organisation, Residents Associations, the Women’s Group, the Men’s Group, the Craft Group, the Environment Group, Parent & Child Group all use the Centre as a base for meetings and activities. 

  • In 2009 St Johnston & Carriagans FRC  were successful in winning an Aontas Star Award for the delivery of the Accelerate Minjbus Driving Programme. The accelerate programme was targeted men who were unemployed, underemployed and had left school at primary level with no formal qualifications. Eleven men completed the programme with a range of accreditations ranging from Fetac Level 3 in Maths, English , Personal Effectiveness and Computers, Safepass Midas, Meeks and Pats Driving training programmes, First Aid, Health & Safety

  • In 2007/09 the FRC engaged with LYIT and four other centres in Donegal in the Centre for Learning Programme. The aim of this programme was to develop standards, policies and procedures to offer third level programmes in rural communities. St Johnston & Carrigans FRC have attained the standard and were awarded their certification at an Award Ceremony in LYIT in February  2009. In 2009 educational programmes such as the Access Course and the Research module of the Higher National Certificate in Community Studies were delivered in St Johnston & Carriagns.

  • The AMERGE group, made up of local women on housing waiting lists has been campaigning for better housing for themselves and their families. They have also been doing personal development work for themselves.  The increase in their confidence has resulted in three of them being successful in getting jobs on our CE Project.  This is the ideal setting for them to progress into further training and eventually employment.  A number of the women are presently in part-time education.  Others have returned to full-time education and employment.  In 2004 “Aontas”, the National Agency for Adult Education used the Amerge group as a focus group for their consultation on Further Education for Women.  In 2005, the Donegal Local Development Company gave the “Blow Your Own Trumpet Award” the group. 



The CE Project Workers are an essential and integral element within the FRC. Their positions support every aspect of the work of the FRC and support the Co-Ordinator, Administrator and Community Development OutreachWorker  to carry out the various duties and tasks to ensure the delivery and implementation of the Three year Action Plan. The CE participants are involved in its full range of activities, from social programmes and services to older people, cleaning, mainteanance and care-taking, to running youth and childcare activities, to environmental and IT work.  Here are some examples of how CE Project workers are involved in meeting local need as outlined above. 


     Childcare workers from the CE Project provide staffing within Stepping Stones Community Playgroup.  Before the advent of the CE Project,maintaing staffing levels was unpredictable with two part-time workers who were heavily reliant on volunteer help from parents and volunteers..  The two Community Employment childcare workers, has enabled the pre school facility to expand the numbers of children now being catered for.  Local National Schools have noted the advantage of children coming from the Playgroup have over those who have had no pre-school experience. The long-term aim is that this will play a part in reducing the levels of early school leaving.  Early achievement will encourage children to progress successfully through primary and second level education and beyond.

      The parents of these children can avail of the time when they are in playgroup to return to education or to take up part-time employment.  A good example of haw the chuildcare facility can support parents back into work or education is the secretary from the first two years of the CE Project.  When she left CE to take up a long-term, part-time job in Lifford, she was able to leave her child in the Playgroup while she was at work.  As a lone parent, affordable childcare was crucial to her ability to take up employment opportunities she has trained for.  CE workers are contributing to providing an essential service childcare services to families in this community.



·        Children from first to sixth class can benefit from coming to our Homework

Club. At present, this is staffed by our CE Project Youth Workers, with the

guidance of our Community Development Worker and the Centre Co-ordinator.

Again, this valuable service is a support to children’s education and supports parents to become more involved in their childrens homework and educational progression.  

      The youth workers have been delivering a quality programme of youth activities for

3 -25yr olds in addition to  a Summer Playscheme and activities during school holidays at Halloween and Easter.


Environmental Workers have made a major contribution to improving and landscaping of the villages of St. Johnston & Carrigans and adjacent housing estates.  Their work supports the voluntary work and efforts of the local residents associations, with whom the Supervisor plans any projects undertaken.  People are starting to take a renewed interest and a pride in their local environment as a result.  In 2003, Ard Baithin won the County Council “Tidy Estates” award for Donegal, which is a source of pride for its residents.  In 2008-09 new initiatives have been supported through the FRC by forming residents group in a new housing estates in Carrigans and St Johnston to maintain and improve their area.  The CE environmental workers play a key role in supporting the work of the residents groups. Through working closely with the CE supervisor in organising clean ups and estate mainteanance.  

The CE Supervisor worked with the local Environment Group to arrange for

recycling bins to be set up in a local filling station.  CE workers ensure these areas are kept clean and tidy.

·        IT Support Worker has been providing Information Technology training and support to members of the community.  Since 2001, we have seen an increase in the use of the computer suite on a drop-in basis by local people. One to one support and tuition  provides a valuable resource to people with disabilities such as hearing defects or learning difficulties and many people avail of this service. The opportunity for learning on the job within the IT room has been maximized through the various tasks involving maintenance and updating the computers and equipment by the IT worker.  In 2008-09 the IT worker has delivered a number of computer classes such as Basic Computers, Email and internet and Photoshop. The IT worker has responsibility for the editing and publication of the monthly newsletter. In 2008-09 the IT worker has also taken on the task of compiling the local notes  which are forwarded to all of the County newspapers who publish them weekly. This development has contributed immensely to the publicity of the events, activities and services being provided within the FRC.


The Support Worker for Older People is working with other staff and local volunteers to provide support services to older people in the community.  There has been a history of voluntary work in this area locally, and the Resource Centre has been actively involved since it came into existence as a Resource Group in 1991.  Through the CE funding of a worker dedicated to this age-group, the Centre has been able to extend its provision to include a fortnightly Lunch Club, as well as supper dances, outings and in 2006 a residential trip to Galway.


·        The CE Project itself provides employment and training opportunities for unemployed people in the community enabling them to progress into employment.  The resulting growth in self- esteem is evident in past participants on the project and is benefiting the Community in countless ways. 


·        Here is the story of two CE Participanst, which are typical of how people involved in the CE Project progress as a result:


 A local woman came to us in 2001 having worked in the home for a number of years.  While she was with us she achieved NVQ Levels 2 and 3 in Early Years Care & Education in NWIFHE Strabane.  On the strength of this, as well as her experience as our Childcare Worker, she got a long-term, part-time job as a home visitor with the “Lifestart”Project based in Newtowncunningham, where she still works.


A local man began work as our caretaker in 2004.  He achieved a Diploma in Creative Writing through a distance learning course from Kilroy’s College, Dublin.  He completed a course in Community Leadership with Co. Donegal  in St Johnston & carrigans FRC which was facilitated by YMCA.   This led to further studies with NUI Galway with a Diploma in Peace Building and Community Development. He was involved in work with other local people to establish the St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC as a Centre for Learning, which aims to deliver third level education to local people.  


As community development projects in St. Johnston, Carrigans and Newtowncunningham, we find the CE Project invaluable in that it provides us with staff for our centres, which allows us to operate a quality service to meet a wide range of local needs.  Without it, we would be greatly restricted in what we could offer.  It allows us to provide supported employment opportunities for local people.


We also value the training component of the CE year as it supports one of our core objectives which is “to provide education and training for the re-skilling of people, to enable them to enter or re-enter the workforce, particularly women and the long-term unemployed.”  (See Section A – “Objectives of the Family ResourcCentre”)



Similarly, the Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative has been working to address the needs identified in its community survey.  The NCDI building has become a focus for community development locally.  There is representation on its Management Committee from18 local community organisations, including the GAA Club, the Community Playgroup, the local Day Centre for Older People, the St. Vincent de Paul  and the Lifestart Programme and many other local development groups.. 


Its CE Project Youth worker is vital to the work of the centre.

The NCDI Youth Project runs a range of activities.  In the Centre itself there is an active Youth Forum who participate in planning the youth programme.  There are strong cross-border links which have been forged through workshops, residentials and day trips, as part of a broader cross community programme.  The CE Project Youth Worker is central to the planning and staffing of these initiatives. 


In the IT Suite, the IT Support Worker/Publishing Assistant plays a supportive role in encouraging people of all ages to build up their IT skills.  This worker also works closely with the Centre Co-ordinator to produce the Community Newsletter, and to provide printing and photocopying services to local businesses and the general public.


The CE Project Environmental Worker maintains all the common grass areas around the town and has improved these, giving local people a pride in their area and supporting local residents groups in their work


The Caretaker/Groundsperson in Naomh Colmcille GAA Club, who is also a CE Participant, supports the voluntary management committee in its work to maintain this valuable local amenity.  As well as providing sporting facilities for the community, this club would also be a social outlet for Newtowncunningham and surrounding areas.


The NCDI is hopeful of securing funding to become a Family Resource Centre in the near future and would have no problem recruiting workers for its own CE Project if funding became available.  In the meantime the four CE workers it has under the present scheme are vital to the continuation of its current programmes of work and it is hopeful that FÁS will allocate a fourth CE place in 2008/09, to provide a Childcare Worker for the Community Playgroup.






In the incoming year, Nov’09– Nov’10 it is envisaged that the Community Employment Project will provide the necessary staffing and resources to maintain our existing programmes and to consolidate the work to date.




Youth/Childcare Work

The Community Employment Youth workers  work closely with the staff of the FRC and are fully involved in the planning and delivery of a programme of activities for young people and children, including homework support, as well as fun events both at the centre and on trips out.  Youth & Childcare Workers have staffed programmes during Hallowe’en, Christmas and Easter holidays as well as during the Summer.  They have also been involved in a series of cross-border projects with our young people, through the Youth Links and North West Flyers Projects.  We see these workers continuing to play a central role in our youth provision in 2009/10.      

Childcare Workers staffed our Pre-school Playgroup again this year, providing an essential service to the local community.  This service has now been extended from four to five days per week.  It is an on-going service, which depends on the CE Project to maintain the required staffing levels.

The role of the CE childcare workers will be increased in the roll out of the new early school years education programme by the Dept of Health & children.

The NCDI Youth Worker has co-ordinated an impressive range of cross-border projects, linking up with groups in Harryville,( Ballymena,Co. Antrim)  Buncrana, Derry and Strabane.  He has also worked with other staff and volunteers to operate weekly youth activities in the NCDI, including a Youth Forum.


Support Worker for Older People

This post was created in Nov’04 with the aim of supporting the work of the local voluntary Social Services Committee, who provide services to the local older population – one of our target groups. Regular activities now include the Lunch Club, Social Evenings and a Meals on Wheels Service. In 2008 the work was extended to provide support for a respite holiday for carers, older people and people with disabilities. The role of the support worker for older people has become an essential  part of the work of the FRC in providing a link with older people and the support groups who work in the community to enhance the lives of older and support independent living in their own homes and communities. We have maintained our links with Seniors  Clubs in many parts of Donegal, Derry and Tyrone. This has taken the form of exchange visits to each other’s club for social networking events.   


Environmental Work

Grass-cutting, landscaping and mainteanance was carried out in the villages of St Johnston, Carrigans and Newtoncunningham in 2008-09, is it our goal to ensurethat this important work in supporting local residents in maintaining their areas should continue into 2009-10. 

Work undertaken included regular litter picking in the villages of St. Johnston & Carrigans and Newtoncunningham.  The flower-beds in St. Johnston were dug over and bedding plants put in.  In spring, the flower beds around the centre were dug over and replanted.  Grass areas around the centre were maintained.

In 2005/’06, we introduced a new aspect to our environmental work by setting up a greenhouse where we grew some of the bedding plants we planted out around the Centre in the spring of 2006.  We built on this in 2006 - 2009, using the expertise of one of our environmental workers who is a keen gardener and the guidance of a member of our management committee who is skilled in this area.  We have grown some bedding plants from seed, which were planted out on St. Johnston Main Street and around the centre. Tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, and onions have also been grown from seed.

On a regular basis, workers set up the Main Hall for various events including Lunch Clubs, Homework Clubs, Social Evenings and funeral meals.  As we are short of storage space, moving furniture around the building to accommodate a full programme of events is on ongoing task.   This work will continue to be a regular feature of the work into 2008/09.


IT Work

·        IT Support Worker has been providing Information Technology training and support to members of the community.  Since 2001, we have seen an increase in the use of the computer suite on a drop-in basis by local people. One to one support and tuition  provides a valuable resource to people with disabilities such as hearing defects or learning difficulties and many people avail of this service. The opportunity for learning on the job within the IT room has been maximized through the various tasks involving mainteanance and updating the computers and equipment by the IT worker.  In 2008-09 the IT worker has effectively delivered a number of computer classes such as Basic Computers, email and internet and Photoshop. The IT worker has responsibility for the editing and publication of the monthly newsletter. In 2008-09 the it worker has also taken on the task of compiling the local notes  which are forwarded to all of the County newspapers who publish them weekly. This development has contributed immensely to the publicity of the events, activities and services being provided within the FRC.







HOURS: 39 hours per fortnight, on a week- on / week-off basis.

                Mon – Thurs: 9 00 am – 5.30pm.  Friday:  9.00 – 4.30pm.

                or 19.5 hrs per week.  Occasional evening or weekend work may be



LOCATION:  Workers will be based at the Family Resource Centre in St.Johnston.

They will work in both St. Johnston and Carrigans villages and surrounding areas.



Good basic skills in general maintenance and gardening are essential.

A full valid driving licence is desirable but not essential.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.



·        To maintain the grounds of the Family Resource Centre, cutting grass, weeding, planting, attending flower beds and various other horticultural activities.

·        To carry out any necessary maintenance, repairs or painting within and outside the centre.

·        To carry out occasional cleaning duties as required in and around the Resource Centre.

·        To put out and take in bins for the Family Resource Centre weekly.

·        To assist in the setting up of rooms in the Family Resource Centre for various functions and clearing away afterwards.

·        To support the work of voluntary Residents Associations in St. Johnston & Carrigans in grass cutting, weeding and other environmental projects.

·        To work in the greenhouse to grow flowers and shrubs for the main streets in both villages and fruit/vegetables for use in the centre.

·        Litter collection, planting, weeding and maintenance of flowerbeds in St. Johnston & Carrigans villages.

·        To be responsible for the care, cleaning & maintenance of all equipment used for environmental work.

·        To assist in the general cleaning of the Centre as required.

·        Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.




This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme.






  HOURS:  19.5 hrs weekly.

                  Weekday afternoons: After School Activity Club.

                  Times of other activities will vary with the Youth Programme.

                  Evening work will be required.  Occasional weekend work will be

                  required, with the possibility of some residential work.


LOCATION:  Workers will be based in the Family Resource Centre in St. Johnston.

ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS: Patience, understanding and experience of working with children/young people. Willingness to be flexible regarding work hours, in order to

accommodate a changing programme of activities.  Ability to work as part of a team.  A clear understanding of current legislation around Child Protection.  All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.


 Youth Drop in Centre: Various times: Staffing and supervision of the youth drop in centre in Main Street, St Johnston  on a rota basis with other centre staff and volunteers.

Duties to include registering attendance, direct work and supervision of the children and young people using the centre. Ensuring that the premises is clean and well maintained, regular planning and review meetings with CE supervisor and centre staff.

Supervision of outings eg. swimming, bowling, cinema, visits to other

     groups, field trips or other club activity that may arise.

     The inventory, correct storage and maintenance of Youth Project equipment and


After School Activity Club:

      Weekday afternoons: Assist in the setting up and delivery of After School activities

      for children aged 6-12 years.  To include homework support and games/ fun activities

      including trips out.  Attend planning and review meetings in relation to this.

      Duties to include: registering attendance, supervising and assisting children with their

      homework, organising creative play opportunities and tidying up after each session.

      Responsibility for the inventory, correct storage and maintenance of Homework Club

      equipment and resources.


Halloween, Christmas, Easter & Summer Youth  Activity Programmes.

Work with management committee, youth team, other staff and volunteers to plan, organise and staff Youth Programmes for children & young people aged 3 – 18yrs at Hallowe’en, Christmas, Easter and during June, July and August. Prepare and circulate publicity and information and carry out the registration for each activity.     

The cleaning of areas used by the children, and assisting in the general cleaning of the Centre as required.

Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 






HOURS:  19.5 hours weekly.

                  Playgroup: Mon 9.00 – 1.00pm.   Tues -Fri 9.30 – 1.00pm

                  Youth activities: times will vary according to the programme. 

                  Afternoon & evening work will be required.  Occasional weekend work

                  may be required. 

LOCATION:  Worker will be based in the Family Resource Centre in St. Johnston.



Patience, understanding and experience of working with children.  A clear understanding of current legislation around Child Protection.     

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management




Pre-school Playgroup (August to July.)

Work with children aged 2yrs 10 months to 5 years. Work with playgroup leaders to provide pre school education and developmental play opportunities for the children, in both indoor and outdoor play areas.  Assist in serving snacks and drinks. Help with preparation of resources and materials. 

Attend Planning & Review Meeting on Wednesdays 1.00 – 1.30 pm.

Carry out full cleaning of play areas daily after children have gone home.


General Youth Activities

Work with management committee, youth team, other staff and volunteers to plan, organise and staff youth programmes for children & young people aged 3 – 18yrs at Hallowe’en, Christmas, Easter and during June, July and August.  Attend meetings in relation to this.

Provide occasional cover for workers in After-School Activity Club in the event of illness/annual leave/study leave.

The cleaning of areas used by the children, and assisting in the general cleaning of the Centre as required.

Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 











HOURS:  19.5 hours per week

                  Monday to Thursday 9.30-1.30pm.  Friday 9.30 – 1.00pm.

                 These times may be rearranged by mutual agreement between the worker

                  and the Centre. Occasional evening and weekend work may be required. 



LOCATION:   The worker will be based in the Family Resource Centre in St. Johnston.



Good basic book-keeping skills and a willingness to undertake training in this. 

Competence and experience in Microsoft Word and a knowledge of Microsoft Excel.

Ability to deal with the public in a professional manner and an understanding of the importance of confidentiality in this role. Good telephone skills and the ability to record written messages.  Evidence of trustworthiness in handling money. 

A friendly and outgoing personality and the ability to work as part of a team. 

In particular to work with the Centre Receptionists/Admin Support Workers to maintain CE Project administration.

Some flexibility regarding working hours.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.

DESIRABLE:  Manual /Computerised Book-keeping.  Computerised Payroll



·        To undertake induction and ongoing training/re-skilling in financial recording and general administrative duties in line with FÁS requirements.

·        To prepare wages and maintain personnel files for all CE participants.

·        To maintain accurate financial records for the CE Project in co-operation with the Supervisor, Centre Administrator and Management Committee.  This will include maintaining materials grant, wages grant, training grant and bank accounts.

·        To maintain separate filing system for Community Employment Project records.

·        To deal with any correspondence relating to the Community Employment Project.

·        General office duties, letter writing, telephone, filing, photocopying etc.

·        To provide clerical assistance to the Resource Centre and related groups as required.

·        To perform reception duties in the front office as required.

·        Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 










HOURS:  19.5 hours weekly. Times to be agreed with worker.

These times may vary slightly to accomodate a changing Centre programme but this will be arranged with the worker in advance.

Occasional evening or weekend work may be required.


LOCATION: The worker will be based in the Family Resource Centre in St. Johnston.


ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS: A good understanding of all Microsoft packages.  The ability to sort out simple problems with the computers and a willingness to be trained in this.  The ability to support and encourage learners.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.


·        To instruct centre staff and members of the local community and in basic computer skills.  To assist the general public using the IT Suite and to set up and maintain records of users.

·        To provide IT/admin support to Centre Staff in general

·        To produce the local newsletter “St. Johnston and Carrigans News” and local weekly notes to county wide newspapers and take responsibility  for its distribution, both manually & electronically.

·        To ensure computers are working properly, reporting faults or breakages to the appropriate person.  To update anti-virus systems on all centre computers.

·        To assist in setting up IT equipment for training and other events in the centre and to maintain an inventory of the centre’s IT equipment.

·        To monitor internet use and report inappropriate use to the Centre Co-ordinator or appropriate staff member.

·        To work with centre staff and “Centres for Learning” Manager in the co-ordination of the “Centres for Learning” Project.and to promote, through appropriate advertising methods, the use of the facility as an open learning centre.

·        To maintain and update web-sites relating to the centre.

·        To promote the on-line library service and support new and existing users.

·        In association with other staff to develop promotional material for the Centre.

·        To act as receptionist in the front office occasionally as required.

·        To ensure that the computer room is kept clean & tidy.  This to include hoovering & dusting.  To maintain files and store centre resources appropriately in the computer room filing cabinet.

·        To undertake training to enable him/her to prepare wages for the CE Project to cover absence due to holiday or sick leave.

·        Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 





HOURS: 19.5 hours weekly.

Mon – Fri: 6.30 to 10.00pm approximately.

Times will vary according to use of Centre.  Saturday opening will be

 required.  Occasional Sunday opening may be required.


LOCATION: The worker will be based in the Family Resource Centre in St. Johnston.


ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS: Reliability and trustworthiness.  Willingness to be flexible regarding work hours, in order to accommodate a changing programme of activities. 

The ability to relate well to the general public and make them welcome in the Centre.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.



·        To open up centre on time for activities, turning off the alarm.

·        To set up rooms for functions, meetings and activities, in accordance with Health and Safety guidelines.  Arranging chairs, tables, equipment such as flipcharts, overhead projectors etc.

·        To welcome the public and direct them to the correct room for the various activities.

·        To ensure that cars are parked safely in the appropriate area of the centre car-park.

·        To collect, record and store securely payments by groups hiring rooms.

·        To record and maintain daily records of centre users for Fire Safety purposes.

·        To answer the phone and record messages for Centre Staff.

·        To oversee the general care of the centre and equipment during hours of opening at night (and on Saturdays/Sundays as needed.)

·        To record and report to relevant person any breakdown or breakages of equipment within the centre.

·        To leave rooms ready for use by next group by tidying up, storing furniture & equipment correctly and washing floors & tables/chairs if necessary.

·        To ensure that toilets are left clean and tidy at the end of every night.

·        To lock up the entire building at night, securing windows, doors and setting the alarm.

·        To carry out light maintenance work eg. replacement of a light bulb.

·        To ensure that fire exits are kept clear and visible to the public.

·        To oversee the evacuation of the building in an emergency.

·        To ensure implementation of non-smoking legislation in the centre.

·        Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the management committee.



This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 






HOURS: 19.5 hours per week.

Normally Mon – Thurs 9.30am – 1.30.  Friday 9.30am – 1.00.

These times will vary according to changes in Centre programme.  Some evening and weekend work will be required. 




Good basic cookery skills or a willingness to learn.  A full valid drivers licence.

The ability to co-ordinate preparation of simple meals for a Lunch Club.

The ability to work as part of a team in carrying out the duties listed below.

 He/she will be expected to work closely with the Support Worker for Older People and

 the HSE Caretaker in particular and with other staff and volunteers.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.



·        To work alongside the HSE Caretaker to carry out daily cleaning in all areas of the centre.

·        To work with the HSE Caretaker to launder the centre’s tea-towels, towels and table-cloths.

·        To carry out cleaning of all kitchen utensils and equipment.

·        To carry out regular checks and cleaning of all toilet areas within the Centre.

·        To ensure that all areas are maintained to a high standard of hygiene and cleanliness at all times.

·        To ensure that all cleaning duties are carried out in line with Health and Safety regulations.

·        To work with other staff on planning and catering for functions such as the Lunch Club, Supper Dance, training events, funeral lunches etc. 

·        To do the necessary shopping for these functions and maintain stocks of essential food-stuffs, kitchen equipment and cleaning materials regularly used in the centre.

·        To do a monthly inventory of kitchen utensils and equipment.  To be responsible for the tracking of utensils and equipment out on loan and ensuring that these are returned.

·        To help out on occasion with the setting up of rooms for activities.

·        Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme. 





Hours:  19.5 hrs weekly.  Times will vary according to activities. 

                                            Evening and  occasional weekend work will be required. 

ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS: An interest in working with older people.  A friendly and outgoing personality and ability to relate to older people.  Good basic cookery skills. The ability to co-ordinate the preparation of simple meals for a lunch club.  A current, full, valid driving licence and access to own transport. The ability to work as part of a team in carrying out the duties listed below.  He/she will be expected to work closely with other staff and volunteers and in. particular with the Housekeeper/Cook and the HSE Caretaker.  All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.


Meals on Wheels: 

-  Update delivery lists.  Keep in touch with chef in Lifford Hospital re meals required.

-  Monitor numbers of containers needed and re-order as necessary.

-  Collect meals in Lifford and bring to Resource Centre for distribution on Tues &

    Thurs every other month.  Act as helper on one route on Tues & Thurs weekly.  Act as

    designated driver on one route on Tuesdays and Thursdays, every second month. 

-  Act as replacement driver as required or organise a replacement if designated driver

    isn’t available.

Lunch Club and Social Programme for Older People

-         Work with the Housekeeper/Cook, other staff and volunteers to organise a fortnightly Lunch Club for older people in the Resource Centre. Co-ordinate volunteers from the community to assist in this.  Ensure that shopping is done for food and other necessary items.

-         Record names & addresses of club members and co-ordinate transport arrangements.

-         Prepare the room and welcome people as they come in. Work with other staff & volunteers to prepare & serve tea/coffee and a mid-day meal.

-         Organise entertainment for each Lunch Club and network with similar groups and related organisations to welcome other groups here and to arrange occasional visits and trips.

-         Work with Resource Centre Management Committee and staff to plan and run  evening entertainments for older people, at least three per year - to include food, music, dancing etc.  Advertise the Social Programme for Older People via church bulletins, local media, local shops and businesses.

-         Confirm numbers and organise transport where necessary.

-     Work to develop the bank of volunteers and draw up rotas to work at events.

-         Work with teams of volunteers to plan catering.  Assist them with catering at the event.  Ensure that shopping is done for food and other necessary items.

-         Co-ordinate setting up of room, setting tables and clearing away afterwards.

-         Welcome people as they arrive and help to host the event.

-         Attend meetings of Social Services Committee.

Chiropody Clinic:  Work with the Receptionist to co-ordinate appointments for this.

-         Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the management committee.

This post is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme






HOURS:  19.5 weekly

                  Times to be arranged with worker.

                 These times may vary according to a changing Centre Programme, but

                  this will be arranged with the worker in advance. Occasional evening or

                  weekend work may be required. 


Ability to deal with the public in a professional manner and an understanding of the importance of confidentiality in this role. Good basic computer literacy and competence in Word Processing.  Good telephone skills and the ability to record written messages.

Evidence of trustworthiness in handling money.  A friendly and outgoing personality and the ability to work as part of a team.  Some flexibility regarding working hours.

All workers are required to respect the confidentiality of Centre users, staff and management.


-         Answer the phone, put calls through to offices, record messages in message book.

-         Deal with queries and messages from the general public and pass these on to other staff as appropriate.

-         Do photocopying, faxing, laminating and binding for the general public and Centre staff.

-         Accept payments for the above and also for printing, internet use, room bookings and programme activities.  Store and record cash transactions and pay cash into the Post Office.

-         Take provisional bookings for centre use (to be verified by Centre staff or Management Committee) and maintain an up-to-date Bookings Diary and Information Board.

-         Maintain records of Chiropody Clinic appointments for Social Services Group.  Organise monthly clinic appointments list and send out letters notifying patients of appointment details.  Co-ordinate appointments on the day of the clinic.

-         Provide administration support to Playgroup leader and voluntary management committee

-         Do admin work for the Youth Project as required.

-         Support the CE Project Administrator with administration work for the CE Project.

-         Undertake training to enable him/her to do wages and administration for CE Project Administrator if necessary to cover holiday/sick leave.

-         Do word processing for Centre staff and assist in general admin duties as required.

-         Provide administrative support as required for local voluntary groups.

-         Maintain a tidy working environment in the front office and front hall.

-         Register new members for the Taobh Tire Library Service and oversee this service in the Centre.

-         Assist the Support Worker for Older People & other staff in the organization of events.

-         Any other duties deemed suitable to the post by the Management Committee.

This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme.

Job Description

Environmental Worker   Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative

St. Johnston & Carrigans CE Project



Hours:  19.5 hours weekly or 39 hours on a week-on/week-off basis


Location:  The worker will be based at the NCDI premises and will work at the NCDI building and grounds, the GAA Club building and grounds and in the public areas of the Newtowncunnigham village.




Newtowncunningham Village & NCDI

Cut grass and hedges in Colehill Park and surrounding areas, the Play Park, Castle Park, around the footbridge at the end of the Main Street and in any other public areas for which the NCDI has responsibility.


Litter and weed control in NCDI grounds and in the above-mentioned public areas of the village.


Maintain trees and existing flower-beds and create new flower-beds in Colehill Park.


Maintain grass, hedges and flower beds around the NCDI building,


Carry out light landscaping work, such as laying kerbs, flower beds, paving etc as required.


GAA Centre

Maintain the two pitches at the GAA Club, Gaelic and Soccer, cut grass, line out regularly and re-seed areas when required.


During the season, ensure that pitches and changing rooms are prepared for weekly matches and tidy up afterwards.


Prepare GAA Club Hall and other facilities for activities by setting up chairs, tables, stage areas etc.

Store furniture and equipment after use and leave premises ready for use the following day.


Cut grass and hedges at the GAA Club grounds and running track and control weeds and litter.


Be responsible for securing the building after work, matches or other events as required – locking all doors and windows and activating the security alarm.


General Maintenance

Carry out light maintenance and refurbishment work, interior and exterior, at the NCDI and GAA premises eg painting, replacing bulbs, filling pot-holes etc.



Attend monthly staff meetings at the NCDI


Take part in any training deemed necessary to the job by the NCDI management committee.


Carry out any other duties that may arise which are appropriate to the position.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme





Job Description

Youth Activity Worker

Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative


Hours:  19.5 hours per week


Location: The worker will be based in Newtowncunningham CDI.



To work under the guidance and co-ordination of the Community Development Officer and youth sub group to deliver a programme of youth activities for children and young people aged 3 to 18 years.


Assist in the planning and organising of timetables and activities.


Supervise the weekly youth forum and youth club sessions.


Participate in the structuring of the youth groups.


Assist in the homework club for primary school-going children.


Supervise the computer classes for children.


Take an active part in the planning and fundraising for the annual summer Playscheme.


Assist in the organisation and implementation of the summer Playscheme.


Keep records of attendance at youth activities and records of any occurrences such as accidents, bad behaviour, bullying etc.


To take on any training which is deemed necessary by the youth sub group such as Child Protection and First Aid.


Attend regular meetings with Development Officer and sub group to review activities, evaluate programme and future planning.



This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme.


Job Description

IT Worker/Publishing Assistant

Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative


Hours:  19.5 hours per week


Location: The worker will be based in Newtowncunningham CDI.



To provide supervision in the Computer suite when in use by the public.


To assist members of the public when requested to use the computers and applications.


To assist tutors in providing IT training when required.


To maintain the computer suite and ensure that computers are in working order at all times and order supplies when needed.


To assist in the design, development and publication of the monthly newsletter.


To assist in the printing and publication of items requested by the general public and the groups supported by the NCDI.  (Tickets, invitations, leaflets, posters, handouts, booklets etc)


To assist in the preparation of the annual report and other reports and documents printed in the NCDI.


To carry out photocopying service to the public when required.


To do any training deemed necessary by the management in order to carry out duties effectively.


Attend monthly staff meetings.



This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme.





Job Description

Childcare Worker

Newtowncunningham Community Playgroup


Hours:  19.5 hours per week.  Monday to Thursday, 9.30am – 1.30, Friday 9.30am – 1.00

Location:  Newtowncunningham Community Playgroup

                  The person appointed would be required to work as part of a team with other


                  Good basic IT skills would be desirable.



·        Day to day responsibility, under supervision, for children attending the Centre


·        Undertake routine tasks as delegated under the supervision of the PlaygroupManager/ Playgroup Leader


·        Implement and review activities appropriate to individual and group needs so as to provide for children’s physical, emotional, social and cognitive development.


·        Observe all procedures as required in terms of care and control, safety and good childcare practice.


·        Contribute to the planning, implementing and review of all developmental programmes through staff planning sessions so as to provide for children’s physical, emotional, social and cognitive development.


·        Choosing, organising and maintaining equipment and materials.


·        Contribute to the compiling and updating of children’s records.


·        Undergo training as required following consultation with Playgroup Manager and Management Committee.


·        Attend staff meetings regularly and occasional Management Committee meetings, including AGM.


·        Report all concerns directly to Playgroup manager or in her absence to Playgroup leader.


·        Liaise with parents as appropriate, under the supervision of Playgroup Leader.


This job is supported by FÁS through its Community Employment Programme.







Levels of unemployment in St. Johnston, Carrigans and Newtowncunningham are above the national average, as has been shown in the detailed statistics in Section E.  This demonstrates the high level of need for a CE Project in this area.  The CE Project is well known and recognized in the local community, as a means of supporting return  to work, so we are confident that all CE places will be filled.


The St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC is very much community-led and managed. We have a huge through-put of local people in the building, through a combination of our own programmes, events and meetings of local groups, and attendance at the Health Centre.  Local people come into the centre to use the computer room, photocopier, fax machine.  Therefore publicising the availability of CE posts and encouraging people to apply for them is easy. The DLDC run a Job Club in the centre every year, which is another way of advertising for participants.  Our CE Supervisor may also source participants through other local CE Supervisors via the Supervisors Network.

CE Posts are advertised on the FAS website in our own Newsletter, the NCDI Newsletter, the local county wide newspapers, shops and post offices.  The NCDI Management Committee has representation from 19 local community groups, which leaves it ideally placed to recruit participants. 


Employment opportunities

In 2008-09 job layoffs have been reported by many of the local employers, Since January 2009 a local engineering form have let 50% of their staff go due to a fall off in demand for their products. The recession within the construction industry will inevitably bring an increase in the number of people signing on the live regisrtrar

The main sources of employment would be concentrated in the nearby urban centres of Letterkenny, Derry and Lifford/Strabane, with some available in Raphoe, Manorcunningham and Newtowncunningham.  There would be a limited number of jobs available in the St. Johnston & Carrigans area.  There is a heavy reliance on the Meat Processing industry, which offers mainly male employment and highly skilled financial and administration work.

Job-types would include working in the building trade, meat factories, cafes, shops or offices or driving lorries/vans/taxis.  People may find work in creches or playgroups, in schools as classroom-assistants, or cleaning in private houses or in businesses. Hospitals in Letterkenny, Lifford and Derry offer a variety of positions.  Self-employment in gardening, painting and decorating, or child-minding are also an option.  Other possibilities include hotels and the hospitality industry in general.

Further education may be the choice of some participants.  This is well provided for locally through the FRC as a Centre for Learning. .  Letterkenny has the FÁS Training Centre, the VEC Adult Education Centre, the Letterkenny Institute of Technology, Rossan College, Future Skills and various other smaller training centres. 

The North West Regional College has a campus in Strabane and one in Derry.  Their campus in Limavady is an option for those willing and able to travel further afield. 





Our participants benefit from the supportive working environment of the St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC especially those who are returning to work after a long absence.  This is also true of the Newtowncunningham CDI.

Both Management Committees actively encourage the development of personal and professional skills in our CE workers, with a view to helping them to move on to employment. Confidence building and skills training for CE participants is seen as part of the work of all our long term staff, not only the CE Supervisor.  Every effort is made to provide opportunities for workers to broaden their experience of work and to undertake training.  


Emphasis is put on team-building and staff development through formal and informal meetings and training events.  The support of the group gives workers the extra encouragement they need to undertake work tasks and training.  All Centre staff, including CE Workers, take part in team building, including a meal out at Christmas and other events.  At the end of the CE Project year, we have a celebration of participants’ achievements in the form of a meal together with all Centre staff and management, followed by a Presentation of Certificates.


The participants meet regularly in small teams, with the CE Supervisor and/or the leader of their work-setting, as appropriate.  Workers in the Youth, Childcare and Environmental teams develop a better understanding of their area of work through being centrally involved in planning and organising, as well as in the actual delivery of programmes.  Skills training happens naturally during these meetings and also while working on the job with more experienced staff.  Participants learn how to work as a team, review their work and plan future programmes based on past experience.


The secretary, receptionist and IT worker, because of their particular skills and the nature of their jobs, are closely involved with the other staff in the Centre.  Through working alongside the Centre Co-ordinator and Administrator, the Treasurer of the Management Committee and the CE Supervisor, they gain valuable experience and learning in clerical work and financial management.  These workers are also sources of support and encouragement for each other.


The Housekeeper/Cook and the Support Worker for Older People will learn how to work as part of a team together with volunteers and centre staff, to run the Lunch Clubs and Social Evenings.  They improve their cooking and organisational skills by learning from each other.  The CE Housekeeper/Cook also works closely with the HSE Caretaker and learns how to plan and organise the cleaning work to fit in with the ever-changing programme of events in the centre. The CE Caretaker also needs to co-operate with Centre staff to make plans for opening times and the requirements of various

groups using the Centre.  In this way teamwork skills are developed and support is available through working with other staff. 


Environmental workers learn from each others’ skills as they work together in teams of two or more.  With our new greenhouse, workers will learn how to propagate plants.  They also work with the Supervisor to make out and adapt work-plans to fit in with the changing centre programme and the changeable Irish weather!  Again, teamwork skills are learned, in addition to task planning and time management.


In the Newtowncunningham CDI,


The CE Supervisor meets regularly with leaders of individual work areas, such as the Playgroup Leader, to discuss the workers’ progress and performance and sort out any issues that may arise.  She is also in regular contact with the Centre Co-ordinator in NCDI and holds formal meetings monthly with her.  The Management committee of the CE Project, which includes representatives from both centres, meets monthly to ensure smooth running of the project. 

The Centre Co-Ordinator in St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC holds a weekly planning and review meeting with the CE Supervisor, the Centre Administrator, the Community Development Worker and the Receptionist/Admin worker.  There is also a monthly Team Meeting for the same workers, along with the CE Project Secretary, to update each other on our work and to do more long-term planning.  This contributes greatly to the smooth running of the programmes, which in turn creates a good working environment for CE Participants. 



DURING 2008-09


The staff and management committee of St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC and the Newtowncunningham CDI encourage workers to undertake training to build on existing skills and achieve certification.  Personal Development and Job-seeking Skills are also on offer.  Time for training is made available during working hours if necessary. 


Following on from this, participants can work towards a qualification to help them find work in their chosen field, when they leave CE. There is a real training culture among CE participants in our centre.  Every participant over the past 7 projects has undertaken at least one piece of training in addition to Health & Safety.  Most have done at least three.  The tradition of training has also been established at the NCDI.  There has been a good uptake of training from our current group as detailed below:



We offer different levels of training in computer skills to all our workers.  They can gain skills to use in their job or for their own personal skills.  Participants will have the option to work towards a qualification, which will make them more employable.  This can take place in our own Computer Suite ( and in NCDI) with our CE funded IT support worker.  Alternatively we can bring in a trained external tutor, or participants can choose to go to Further Education Colleges in Letterkenny, Derry or Strabane.




We encourage all our workers to take the opportunity of doing work experience in another setting to broaden their experience or to let them sample a completely different type of work altogether.  We are committed to facilitating this as far as possible, where we can cover for them in their absence, in order to maintain our own programmes.  See below for details of work experience done in 07/08 so far.



We have always encouraged participants, where appropriate, to consider starting their own businesses. (See details in Section G)




·        Return to Education VEC Volt House, Raphoe

·        Essential Skills St Johnston & Carrigans FRC

·        Essential Skills, VEC, Volt House, Raphoe

·        Understanding Special Needs ( Fetac Level 50 DCC/VEC  Ballybofey)

·        Certificate In Early Childhood Education (Fetac Level 5) Rossan College

·        Core Skills Programme (FAS) Letterkenny

·        Work Experience Module Fetac Level 5


Training Completed that led to qualifications/ACCREDITATION 2008-09

·        Safety Awareness ( Fetac Level 3) St J & C FRC

·        Certificate in Community Work- Magee College

·        Safepass- Worksmart  Safetech LYIT

·        Access Course – LYIT in St J&C FRC

·        Irish Sign Language – NW Regional College Derry

·        Job Seeking Module - Fetac Level 3 St J & C FRC

·        Certificate in Manual and Computerised Book keeping

·        Internet Module- Fetac Level 3?

·        Occupational First Aid - ?


GENERAL TRAINING DONE 2008/09 to date:

·        Digital Photography- Rossan College

·        Applied Suicide Intervention Skills training –HSE

·        Go for Life – Voice for Older People

·        Lawnmower & Strimmer maintenance ?




Driving Theory Test

Groupwork Theory & Practices Fetac Level 6

Practical Teaching Skills for Adults

Manual Handling in a caring setting

Working with Children with Special Needs

Cookery – Fetac Level 3

Higher National Certificate in Administration and IT

NVQ in Plumbing or Woodwork or Tiling



  • The CE Supervisor works with participants, in individual and team meetings, to plan and sign post for progression on to jobs or further education.

  • Job Seeking and Core Skills programme will support the participants to actively seek work by putting together and updating their cvs, interview and practical.job orienteering skills.

  • Refer participants to VEC’ Donegal Adult Learner Guidance Service who will come to the St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC for appointments..  This worker helps people to plan their education, training and career paths.  Obviously, this is very relevant to CE participants and a number of this year’s group has had individual meetings with the guidance worker.  The supervisor works closely with the guidance worker to put together development plans for each participant. 

  • The Resource Centre provides a Situations Vacant notice board. We also have internet access in our computer suite, which can be used to source employment..  Weekly vacancy lists are sent to us by e-mail from FÁS.  These are posted on a notice board in the Centre.



St Johnston & Carrigans Community Employment Project recognizes the importance of the partnership approach in creating and maximizing opportunities for participants.

We would encourage the supervisor to link up with other C.E. projects to set up joint training ventures, where resources such as premises and equipment are shared. 

This year’s group did Lawnmower & Strimmer Maintenance along with C.E. participants from Castlefin.

At a local level there is excellent examples of good working relationships with residents groups and sporting bodies in developing work plans which serve to create a better environment and community for all.

The past two years have seen the development of close links between our Lunch Club and similar clubs in Strabane, Lifford, Raphoe and Newtowncunningham.  We hope to build on this networking in 2009/10, continuing the visits to each other clubs and major events to which all the groups are invited, as part of the Bealtaine Festival for older people during May.

During 2009/10 St. Johnston & Carrigans FRC Youth Workers have been co-working with staff from the “Youth Links” Project, based in Lifford with a remit to work in Ballintra, Raphoe, St Johnston & Carrigans and Strabane. In 2008- 09 two of the youth workers took part in training in youth & community work, conflict resolution and personal development facilitated by Donegal Youth Service and Youth links. The partnership with youthlinks has continued with projects and training aimed at promoting peace and reconciliation on a cross border and cross community basis.

As detailed elsewhere, the NCDI Youth Project also has cross border partners in Co Antrim with whom they have engaged in Good Relations work.



The staff and management of St Johnston & Carrigans FRC and NCDI are fully committed to supporting the CE project in a number of ways

§         Representation on the management board

§         Attendance at meetings

§         Support for the CE supervisor

§         Participation on recruitment, interview and induction process

§         Input into the participants workplan and training needs analysis

§         Commitment to supporting, encouraging, advising, identifying and sourcing training for participants.

§         Mentoring and supervision of participants.

§         Participant Development Officer

§         Weekly team meetings


      The Management Committee of the CE Project, which is composed of a sub-group of the FRC Management Committee and two representatives from the NCDI  Management Committee, is dedicated to the support and management of the CE project.  They meet with the Supervisor as necessary and are available by phone on a daily basis, should and when she need to contact them. 

      The FRC Management Committee is fully committed to the support of participants in their personal development, acquisition of skills, experience and qualifications in order to progress on to employment or further education.  We will make every effort to facilitate their participation in training, and to create a supportive work environment for on-the job learning.






Ongoing Support & Training with the Ailim Support Agency.


In March 2002, St. Johnston & Carrigans Resource Centre became a Family Resource Centre, with core funding from the Department of Social & Family Affairs, as part of the Community Development Support Programme. In accordance with their contract with the Dept’ of Social & family Affairs staff and management of the FRC are committed to ongoing training and structured communication links to ensure that all responsibilities are fulfilled.

Ailim Training and Support Agency are the body who have been contracted to provide training and support to FRCs in the North West of Ireland. Ailim provide a Support Worker who will work with FRC staff and management to support the effective management and running of the FRC

In addition to this support the FRCs in the NW have networks and forums to facilitate good communications and sharing of information.




Training done with “Ailim” in 2008 - 2009

Management Committee Roles & Responsibilities

Review of 3 year action plan

Good Employment practices

Employment Law

Staff Supervision & support

Recruitment and interview skills

Roles and Responsibilities of management committees

Managing FRCs in a recession



St. Johnston & Carrigans Family Resource Centre is located on Chapel Road, St Johnston and provides the main base and workspace for participants working on the CE Project.  The FRC is the primary provider of facilities and resources and facilities to support the running of the CE project; the FRC is home to Stepping Stones Playgroup and the multi purpose community facility where the after school and youth activities, lunch club and various other activities and training rooms are based.  There is also a fully-equipped computer suite for the use of the I.T. support worker, other staff and the general public. 


Office space for the administration staff is provided in the front reception area and in a portacabin at the rear of the building.  There are outside storage areas for environmental equipment, a cleaner’s store, laundry room and all the necessary back-up facilities, including kitchen, toilets.


The Newtowncunningham Community Development Initiative have recently into a new premises in the centre of Newtoncunningham. This building will be the base for all the CE Participants working in Newtowncunningham.  This has an IT Suite and office space with all the necessary equipment for the IT Worker and Youth worker to carried out their designatd duties.  Kitchen and toilet facilities are available as well as a meeting room that can also be used for youth activities.  The Centre Co-ordinator has an office in the building and is there to organise and support the work.  A large shed in the nearby Colehill estate houses all the equipment needed by the environmental worker – mowers, strimmers etc. 


The NCDI Environmental Workers will spend some time working at the Naomh Colmcille GAA Centre.  This centre has kitchen & toilet facilities as well as outside storage sheds for mowers, strimmers and other tools.  The fully equipped Community Playgroup, where the Childcare Worker will be based, is also in this building. 





Insurance:                                                                                 €2,500.00


Overheads & Administration:                                                    €7,000.00


Development Modules:                                               €11,500.00


Wages – Participants                                                            €275,000.00


Wages – Supervisor:                                                               €40,170.00


P.R.S.I.:                                                                                   €4,350.00


Materials:                                                                                €16,920.00


Total:                                                                                     €357440.00


The above costs are based on current government policy on wages, PAYE/PRSI, Christmas bonus etc and may have to be adjusted in line with any changes in this policy.


(Overheads & Admin will include the following:  Stationery, Phone, Post, Broadband, Petty Cash, Bank Duty, Travel (from materials grant) and the Audit Fee.)



Funding received in 2009:

€7,165.34 :   Health Service Executive – Wages for Part-time HSE Caretaker

€158,440.00 -:   Department of Social, Community & Family Affairs – Salaries for Centre  Co-Ordinator, Centre Administrator and Community Development Outreach


We receive no funding for the work done by the CE Project from any EU Initiative or Budget.  The work done by our five previous CE Projects, as well as the current one, has been completely funded by FÁS.




The Management Committee of the CE Project, will be responsible for the financial management of the project.

The following financial control systems have been put in place to monitor and manage funding received from FÁS:


·        Records of income and expenditure:  The CE Project administrator will keep a computerised cheques journal (including a lodgments record), and a wages book. 


·        Claims from FÁS:  A spreadsheet will be maintained, detailing amounts claimed and received from FÁS under the three budget headings – Materials, Wages and Training.


·        Cheques:  Two signatures are required on every cheque and a cheque authorisation form must be signed.  A member of the CE Project Management Committee will check the wages-cheques against the tax cards and the AWS sheet weekly and initials this.


·        Wages:  A member of the CE Project Management Committee will do a random weekly check of the calculations of one person’s wages, through the tax deduction card, wages book, cheques journal and cheque stub.


·        Materials:  A monthly random check will be done on this by a member of the CE Project Management Committee, by initialing a print out of that month’s cheques journal and the cheque stub.