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Lottery boost for Minister's local area

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Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald has backed the stance of her fellow Fine Gael leadership contender, Health Minister Leo Varadkar, in seeking to have the Constitution changes.

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald has backed the stance of her fellow Fine Gael leadership contender, Health Minister Leo Varadkar, in seeking to have the Constitution changes.

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald has backed the stance of her fellow Fine Gael leadership contender, Health Minister Leo Varadkar, in seeking to have the Constitution changes.

MINISTER Frances Fitzgerald's home constituency of Dublin mid-west was the biggest beneficiary of National Lottery funding from the Department of Children and Youth Affairs where she served as a minister until May.

Organisations in her constituency received 7pc the available funding of €910,000. This €63,000 was distributed among a range of groups, including Beacon of Light Counselling service in Clondalkin, the Marie Keating Foundation based in Lucan and the Palmerstown boxing club.

Beacon of Light Counselling and Aspen Counselling service in Lucan received €21,500.

Minister Fitzgerald announced the funding in November and committed to working further with both groups.

"Aspen will put €4,000 towards a user-friendly IT system while Beacon of Light, which operates in a residential area, will also benefit from investment of €17,500 in its premises," she said.

The Dept of Children is one of three Government departments that allocates funding under the lottery scheme as well as the Dept of Health and the Dept of Tourism and Sport.

Groups who wished to apply were asked to fill out a form which would be evaluated by department staff and forwarded to the Minister "for her consideration", according to guideline's published on the department's website.

Some 190 organisations were successful in securing funding and it is down to the minister to make the final decision.

The East Wall North Port Development Group was given the highest amount, receiving €30,000.

A spokesperson for Minister Fitzgerald told the Herald that she is "very pleased that the improved economic situation allows Government to support these much-needed services".

Dublin mid-west was, he pointed out, home to 110,000 people and there are "huge numbers" of voluntary groups.

hnews@herald.ie


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