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‘Positive about PEACE’: Conference hears of ‘huge’ impact of £6.7m PEACE IV funding

27 June 2019

38 representatives from local community projects met in the City Hotel yesterday for a conference & networking event aimed at sharing their learning and experiences – and hearing more about the ‘hugely positive’ impact of the £6.7 million PEACE IV programme in the Derry City & Strabane District Council area.

The PEACE IV EU funded programme runs until December 2020 and is managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) with match-funding from The Executive Office NI and Department for Rural and Community Development in Ireland.

PEACE IV Programme Manager at Derry City & Strabane District Council Sue Divin said:

“We’re roughly mid-way through delivery of the council-led PEACE IV programme.

“There are over 60 projects from Castlederg to Creggan across rural and urban areas – with almost 3,000 people involved so far!

“Indeed, all of our PEACE IV projects are cross-community – and the enthusiasm for people working together, sometimes on difficult community issues, is abundantly clear – this funding is making a very real and positive difference!”

“The conference and networking event showcased a number of peace projects which are nearing completion, including the ‘North West Ministry Of Youth,’ as part of the Children and Young People’s theme which engaged young people to shape the development of a youth council. ‘JustUs’, by Gaslight Media Trust also showed how a ‘Train the Trainer’s’ programme has equipped local teachers, youth and community leaders to deliver multi-media workshops on legacy issues, prejudices and migration.

“A number of small grant projects – ‘Time2Choose’ by Rosemount Resource Centre and ‘Celebrating Commonality, Celebrating Difference’ by The Churches Trust, also shared their experiences – stressing the difference that their projects are making to young people and adults on the ground.

“In addition, Greater Shantallow Community Arts presented on the significant impact that their ‘Don’t Shoot My Wane, Shoot Me!’ project has had in stimulating debate around the difficult issue of community attitudes to so-called ‘punishment attacks.’

“The conference also heard from 7 projects which have only recently started – as well as their hopes and aspirations for the future. Indeed, representatives from the Liberty Consortium (Playtrail), In Your Space, the Rainbow Project, Holywell Trust, Londonderry Bands Forum, Destined and Churchtown Community Association were all very enthusiastic about the opportunities that PEACE IV funding creates for them in taking their projects forward.

“In conclusion, there are so many wonderful projects taking place as a result of PEACE IV funding.

“Indeed, this fantastic funding is also helping to bring in new participants and audiences every day who’ve never engaged in a cross-community project before – and is therefore really having a ‘huge’ impact in terms of the positive peace and reconciliation work happening throughout our City and District!”