Local Councillor Charlie O’Connor recently enquired to the opening of local community centres, he asked “To ask the Chief Executive to confirm his plans to facilitate the full re opening of all community centres throughout our County; will he detail assistance and resources being made available in that regard”.
The response entailed the following; “Current Government guidelines have not yet given a clear indication about the reopening of community centres. From 5th July, organised indoor events are permitted with a maximum of 50 attendees subject to social distancing rules and strict public health measures and it is apparent that most of the community centres would not have space requirements to cater for such numbers in that context while there will also be significant challenges for local voluntary Boards of Management in ensuring Covid proofing and enforcing adherence to the relevant guidance in indoor settings”.
The reply continued “Government guidelines still provide that from 5th July, visitors from only up to 3 other households can meet inside the home and that the number of attendees for indoor fitness training/exercise/dance activities are restricted to up to 6 individuals. In this context and with the Government advice for this summer being a “summer outdoors, community centre boards of management are examining the use of suitable outdoor space adjoining the buildings can best be utilised by local groups. The community development team will advise and support on such usage and community grants remain open for applications to support both facilities re-opening as well as local community events and any new or innovative covid resilience initiatives. We will continue to monitor the government and sectoral advice about further opening up measures particuarly to allow active aged and other groups to utilise the community centres but in the meantime community groups should be advised to utilise outdoor spaces for events and initiatives in conjunction with support from the community development team” .