“SOCIAL ENTERPRISE IS BUSINESS FOR GOOD”
Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme has applied the social enterprise model to alleviate decades of disadvantage in this rural border area of north Co Monaghan since 2008.
Prior to the rebrand launch on 14th October 2022, Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme has never been called a “social enterprise” in any publicity or communication with service-users, suppliers or stakeholders. Truagh Development Association CLG welcomes the Department of Rural and Community Development’s commitment in developing the Key Messages and an Awareness Strategy which will facilitate Truagh Development Association’s retelling of the story of the importance and success of our social enterprise.
Since 20028, Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme has developed strong stakeholder relations since its foundation and utilises continuous need analysis to help address local economic and social needs that are not being met through public or private funding or other sources. The services outlined below were developed following consultation with and support from, for example, Cavan Monaghan HSE Older Persons’ Services, Pobal, civil society organisations, schools, An Garda Siochana, Cavan Monaghan ETB, Monaghan Integrated Development, Equal Ireland, local community organisations, local food producers and suppliers. Activities include meals on wheels, hot school lunches, befriending service for older people, care for carers supports, Food Hub, lifelong learning opportunities, cross border cross community events, home visits, good morning calls, signposting and support with the likes of medical card applications, motor tax online.
Our social enterprise generates income that subsidises services such as home visits, good morning calls and the Food Hub. Every €5,000 that is spent purchasing our services helps us support more than 300 older people in Truagh and the wider Monaghan Municipal District. Every parent that buys the hot school lunch for €3.50 understands that 100% of that income goes to pay for the van the Community Support Worker for Older People uses on her visit with an older person in the locality.
Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme Social Enterprise is a business for good. It generates income through its goods and services that are reinvested into delivering its wide range of complimentary services to the most vulnerable in the community of Truagh and the wider north Monaghan area. Complimentary services include cross border cross community events, home visits, good morning calls, signposting and the Food Hub.
Why should we find out more about social enterprise:
Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme Social Enterprise really came into its own during the Covid-19 pandemic. Our Social Enterprise proved itself dynamic and fit for purpose to meet the rapidly developing needs of the communities in which we operate.
For, example, on the 12th March 2020 the CSP provided weekly social services for the elderly in this rural border area, rural transport, hot school lunches to 5 national schools, further education and training services and much more. The CSP had 0 volunteer drivers.
On the 13th March 2020 all of those services ceased and the Centre closed its doors to the public.
By the 17th March, the CSP Management team changed the focus of our social enterprise radically to one of 100% outreach to the community and subsequently volunteer support had to be ramped up dramatically to ensure the CSP could meet the emerging needs of the community in Truagh and the wider north Monaghan area.
With the support of Monaghan Volunteer Centre, Truagh Development Association Board, Gaeil Triucha GFC, Emyvale GAA and members of the community, a team of 41 volunteer drivers was recruited to deliver care packages and hot meals to older and vulnerable people cocooning in Truagh and the wider north Monaghan area.
The work of Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme during the pandemic has been recognised at national level:
- CSP Management Team awarded National Volunteer Manager of the Year Award, December 2020
- Nationwide “Good Neighbours” Report, aired 4th August 2021
This has lead to a dramatic raising of the awareness of the work of Truagh Development Association’s Community Services Programme in Co Monaghan and nationally. The ARISE funding supports Truagh Development Association to raise awareness about the nature of social enterprise, the benefits it brings to the community and the important role social enterprise plays in social and economic life in this rural border area.