April 2023 – Public Consultations throughout Clare for new LEADER plan!

April 2023 – Public Consultations throughout Clare for new LEADER plan!

Clare Local Development Company (CLDC) is inviting people from local communities to have their say and help shape the new LEADER plan for Co. Clare, and to discuss how other CLDC programmes can address community needs in the county. A series of public meetings will be held in eight locations around the county in April. CLDC is encouraging anyone with views and ideas to come along, get involved in the discussion, and have their voice heard. The new LEADER programme will open for business late in 2023 after a LEADER Plan has been agreed for the county.

CLDC Chairman, Mike Hogan, wants to hear from people on the ground. “These are the people who can tell us what they need from LEADER and the other supports that CLDC has to offer to local communities,” he said. CLDC has delivered LEADER for 31 years in Clare, and also delivers the social inclusion programme SICAP, the Rural Social Scheme, Tús, Rural Walks Scheme, Ukrainian Response, Roma and Traveller projects, community childcare, Local Area Employment Service, and other supports.

“These public meetings with CLDC staff and Board members are a great opportunity to influence the shape of LEADER and CLDC for the next five years,” added Mike Hogan. “With a smaller LEADER budget and growing demand from communities, we need to decide how LEADER and CLDC can be most effective at supporting communities and the rural economy through very challenging times.”



The public consultation meetings will take place from 7 – 8.30 p.m. in the following locations: Kilfenora April 4th, Miltown Malbay April 5th, Clarecastle April 18th, Kilkee April 19th, Corofin April 20th, Sixmilebridge April 25th, Labasheeda April 26th , and Tulla April 27th. An online consultation event will take place on May 3rd.

Email leader@CLDC.ie for more information.

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to stay up to date!

Spreading Good News: Chapter One

Spreading Good News: Chapter One

With so many challenges facing our communities, it’s nice to hear a bit of good news every once in a while!  Here at Clare Local Development Company, it’s our job to have a positive impact in vulnerable and disadvantaged communities.  Recently we’ve been thinking more and more that we should share some of the stories that highlight this positive impact. We think it’s important to let people know that things can, in fact, change for the better, and that there are people and organisations out there who are working really hard to make that happen. It’s not always glamorous (in fact, it usually isn’t,) and it’s almost always small steps that make the difference. But we are proud of what we do, and the ways that we work to empower our local communities.

One way that CLDC empowers and supports people is through capacity-building and employment.  This means that we help people to get the information they need, and often learn the skills needed, to get themselves a job. When someone can get themselves a job, their life changes in a big way.


We also work with local employers, agencies and training organisations, and connect them with job-seekers. This means that not only do job-seekers have opportunities, but the businesses in need of help can get the support, training, and new talent they are looking for as well. Through all of these efforts, we end up with more empowered and resourced individuals, more diverse and successful local businesses, and a stronger community network.

This is really important in rural places like West Clare, where people live quite far from each other, economic conditions can be challenging, and there aren’t many hubs for gathering, learning, working, or exchanging resources.  A lot of the suffering isn’t visible at all, and it continues generation after generation.  So if we can provide opportunities for empowerment, it can have a really positive impact. And as we know in Ireland, word travels fast. So let’s try to spread some good news, shall we?


Last Wednesday, March 1, Clare Local Development Company put on an event that was designed to bring the local community out, and do all that good stuff mentioned above. We called it the West Clare Jobs Fair. The Clare County Council was nice enough to provide us with a wonderful space to host it, at the DigiClare Digital Hub in Kilrush.

“The West Clare Jobs fair was a great success,” said Hilary Gleeson, one of the organisers and a wonderful staff member here at CLDC.  “We had nearly 200 attendees and 26 stands with employers, recruitment agencies, virtual stands and agencies such as ourselves (Clare Local Development Company,) Limerick Clare Education and Training Board, Department of Social protection, Employability Clare, Grow Remote and Clare County Council.


Local employers such as Saint Gobain Manufacturing, Kilrush Credit Union, Clare Fire & Rescue, FRS Network, Ireland Home Care, ESB Moneypoint and Trump International Hotel were among the stands, as well as Espresso Bar and Kilrush Aqua Park looking for employees.

Many brought their CVs along to give to employers and chat about the roles available in many types of businesses, from hospitality to engineering and healthcare, with many including training as part of the job.”

“It’s a brilliant event,” said Colette and Liam from the FRS Network. “It’s really great, the people coming through are great. And the Ukrainians have so much to offer us. It’s really good to be here.”


Although there was a strong Ukrainian turnout, along with refugees from other countries, a large percentage of the attendees were local Irish.  “It’s great meeting so many people; it’s really good to come down here,” reflected one employer. This was a common sentiment; Aine from the Kilrush Credit Union commented, “It’s great to be out meeting people. It’s brilliant, and it’s great to have this happening in West Clare. It’s important to showcase everyone that’s here, and also everything that’s available.”  The crew at Clare Fire and Rescue reported, “A great buzz, really good interactions. Lots of people coming and going, it’s brilliant.” The Espresso Bar crew added, “It was a really good event. From an organisational perspective, really well run, really effective. Really good turn out, really wonderful people coming through.”

Hilary added, “We were very fortunate to have Microsoft attend with Patrick Cusack who showed the vast array of jobs available with his company, and further than that he showed attendees how to set up a CV online with a LinkedIN profile, encouraging jobseekers to link with their networks to find work.”  Patrick said he was “very happy with the footfall” at the event. “The biggest challenge is about connecting people to a network,” he said. “So many [of the people in need of work] have so many incredible skill sets; but they are lacking the network to know who to talk to about what kind of job. I’m trying to help people learn how to put their skillset out there.”


We had Killian from Local Link helping people to understand the options for public transport to and from potential work locations. “It’s about people knowing that if they get a job, they’ll be able to get there,” he said.  We also had representatives from GrowRemote and CloudAssist sharing information about the logistics, benefits and possibilities of remote working. There were translators and interpreters on site to assist with language barriers. We did everything we could to make sure that people could get the information they needed, and to make opportunities accessible.

Sean MacNamara, a colleague at CLDC, commented, “Nearly 200 jobseekers attended; some will have left and will now go into employment, and more will have left with a sense of hope that employment is accessible. Many have been given a starting point on a roadmap to employment.”

Commenting on the overall impact and success of the event, Sean added, “Social Inclusion and community development is always about trying to connect people and develop positive relationships, and this Jobs Fair succeeded in doing just that.”


We want to thank everyone who showed up to take part, and to commend the courage it takes to put yourself out there!

All in all, it was a fantastic turnout, meeting a lot of community needs, and empowering local residents of West Clare to take the next steps towards employment, capacity-building, connection and empowerment.  It was a good day.

Stay tuned for more good news!

Marking One Year of Ukrainian War

Marking One Year of Ukrainian War

As we mark one year since the invasion of Ukraine began, the staff and Board of Clare Local Development Company want to take a moment to pause and reflect. We wish to remember and honour the many thousands of Ukrainian people who have lost their lives, their homes, and their loved ones, in the past year. We wish to express our support for the Ukrainian community in County Clare, and we continue to work in solidarity with those seeking safety, refuge and support. We are proud to support our local communities in welcoming and integrating our guests, and we have already seen many positive impacts. Our CLDC Ukrainian team members also wish to thank local communities for their kindness and generosity, in adjusting and welcoming the Ukrainian community.

May we find peaceful and inclusive ways forward together.

Оскільки ми відзначаємо рік з початку вторгнення в Україну, співробітники та правління Clare Local Development Company хочуть взяти хвилину, щоб зупинитися та поміркувати. Ми хочемо згадати та вшанувати багато тисяч українців, які втратили свої життя, свої домівки та своїх близьких минулого року. Ми хочемо висловити нашу підтримку українській громаді в графстві Клер і продовжуємо працювати в солідарності з тими, хто шукає безпеки, притулку та підтримки. Ми пишаємося тим, що підтримуємо наші місцеві громади у прийнятті та інтеграції наших гостей, і ми вже побачили багато позитивних наслідків. Члени нашої української команди CLDC також хочуть подякувати місцевим громадам за їхню доброту та щедрість у адаптації та гостинності української громади.

Нехай ми разом знайдемо мирні та всеосяжні шляхи просування вперед.

FREE Clare Invasive Species Biodiversity Training!

FREE Clare Invasive Species Biodiversity Training!

Clare Local Development Company (CLDC) is now taking applications for a 3-month LEADER funded training to help people living in County Clare to understand the devastating impact of invasive species in gardens, green spaces, and countryside around them, and to learn how to stop new introductions, control the dispersal of those already established, and network with other like-minded people.

The training is free of charge. No prior knowledge is required and there are no criteria for participation, other than motivation and interest.

The training will consist of 8 weekly webinars, starting on Wednesday 8th March 2023, combined with classroom and field-based practical work. The training will be centred around Ennis, Kilrush, Lisdoonvarna, Scarriff, and Shannon but all communities and individuals are welcome.


‘Taking action against invasive species is one of the most important steps we can take to slow the pace of climate change and biodiversity loss’, says Dr Fran Giaquinto who will lead the training. ‘Our aim is to help you understand the connection between biodiversity, invasive species, and climate, and we will do this in a practical, lively, and informal way.’

You will have the benefits of some of the best specialists in Ireland. Linda Gilsenan is an experienced organic gardener and pollinator-friendly landscaper, and she will teach you about the invasive species that may be lurking in your gardens. Phoebe O’Brien is a nationally respected botanist who will help you identify some of the most common invasive species and explain how to spot a plant that has become invasive. Nicholas Head is an invasive species contractor who has spent the last 12 years developing systematic methods of prevention and control that do not involve the use of herbicide.

“We want this training programme to succeed at a very high level and provide a blueprint for community-led habitat protection into the future. Our vision is to equip all participants with the confidence, knowledge, and tools to identify invasive species, stop their arrival, prevent their dispersal when they do arrive, and protect our precious Clare landscapes’, says Fran Giaquinto. By the end of the training you will be champions in your community, with the confidence and knowledge to raise awareness and help others. Unless absolutely necessary, we do not encourage the use of herbicide.

CLDC LEADER Development Officer, Gerry McDonagh has urged groups and individuals with an interest in conserving the biodiversity of their locality to apply for a place on the course. ‘The programme will deliver on the biodiversity objective of our Local Development Strategy to deliver training for community groups and individuals that stimulates actions to protect and enhance vulnerable species and habitats’, said Mr. McDonagh.

More than 70 participants can join the training. Let’s make 2023 the year when we systematically and collaboratively set out on the journey of ridding our beautiful county of invasive species.

Participants will need access to internet and a smart phone or laptop. The trainers will assist with set up and use of the online Zoom software.

Further information and an application form can be obtained by emailing biodiversityleader@gmail.com

Brochure can be downloaded here:  CLDC Invasive Training Brochure.

Clare Traveller CDP – Men’s Development Outreach Worker

Clare Traveller CDP – Men’s Development Outreach Worker

Clare Traveller Community Development Project wishes to recruit a Men’s Development Outreach Worker (17.5 hrs per week)

This important project currently has a small staff team based in Ennis and needs an energetic person who is committed to achieving positive change with the Traveller Community in Co. Clare.

Click here for full job description

To apply, please submit a current CV and letter of application to Iyabo Matthew, imatthew@cldc.ie HR Dept., Clare Local Development Company, Westgate Business Pk, Kilrush Rd, Ennis, Co. Clare

Applications to arrive no later than 5pm on Wednesday, March 22nd, 2023. Late applications will not be considered.

Clare Local Development Company is an Equal Opportunities Employer, and we particularly welcome applications from the Traveller Community.

Garda vetting may apply.