COMMUNITY TO PLAY A KEY ROLE IN THE NATIONAL ACTION PLAN ON COVID-19
The Government’s new National Action Plan in response to COVID-19 was launched on March 16 2020.
The Plan sets out a ‘nationwide cohesive approach’ to respond to tackling the global pandemic in Ireland.
The Plan mentions a close collaboration with voluntary and community organisations, such as charities, local voluntary groups, volunteers’ to ‘contribute to the national effort in supporting those more vulnerable people in their communities’.
In the Plan the Government acknowledge that community and voluntary organisations will be at the heart of the State’s coordinated response to COVID-19. These organisations are therefore vital, play a key role and can contribute their expertise to planning and decision-making.
The National Action Plan outlines a number of key actions that will require the involvement of Ireland’s 29,000 charities, community and voluntary organisations and social enterprises.
Specifically, the plan notes the importance of:
- promoting empathetic community engagement
- supporting community solidarity activity
- maintaining essential health and social services (which many community and voluntary organisations already deliver in partnership with the State)
- expanding and protecting public and private sector workers involved in essential services (including employees of community and voluntary organisations)
- clarifying arrangements for public service special leave
- ensuring business continuity plans are in place for all agencies and bodies under aegis of all government departments
- continued payment of childcare subsidies to providers for services directed to close, and
- providing a range of liquidity and loan finance to SMEs.
Ms Garvey, CEO of the The Wheel ensures that, ‘we will be working closely with the Government to ensure that community and voluntary organisations have access to the necessary resources to implement these actions, and to enable them to continue operating existing services, retain, recruit and re-allocate key staff in response to emerging needs’.
Download the National Action Plan here.