Wednesday, 4 March 2009
Dáil Eireann Debate
130. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs his plans to increase or offer support to the various community groups throughout County Kildare in urban or rural areas with particular reference to those involved in drug rehabilitation programmes; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9252/09]
135. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs his plans to increase or improve financial assistance to groups, bodies or agencies, voluntary or statutory, involved or proposing to get involved, in drug rehabilitation programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9257/09]
As I have previously advised the Deputy, funding for the Local and Regional Drugs Task Forces in 2009 will be approximately €34.6m. Of this, over €23m is being allocated to the LDTFs while over €11m is being earmarked for the Regional groups.
In relation to Co. Kildare, which is part of the South West RDTF area, the following allocations have been made: Abbey Project — funding of €150,000 has been provisionally allocated in 2009 to provide a number of services such as drop-in, family support, referral, counselling, holistic therapies and advice and information on housing to drug users and their families from Celbridge and the surrounding areas; Community Drug Team for Kildare and West Wicklow — for 2009, funding of €350,000 has been provisionally approved for this service which will expand and complement existing treatment services along with family support and early responses to young people at the early stage of drug misuse; and Newbridge Family Resource Centre — in 2007, an amount of €22,354 was approved under the Premises Initiative in respect of the purchase and installation of a semi-permanent structure for the Centre to provide a dedicated drop-in facility for “at risk” youth.
Some of the other funding provided to that Drugs Task Force also provides benefit broadly across their region of operation, including Co. Kildare. In addition, in the region of €80,000 has been made available to Teen Challenge, a rehabilitation project at Shechem House, Richardstown, Co. Kildare, arising from applications through the South Inner City LDTF in Dublin. This funding is in respect of the first half of 2009.
Overall, in the region of €22m was spent in 2008 on projects in Task Force areas with a treatment and rehabilitation focus. Funding for the majority of these projects will continue in 2009, albeit in some cases, possibly at a somewhat reduced level. Roughly 70% of the LDTF projects focus on treatment/rehabilitation, while over 44% of the regional projects have a similar focus.
In addition to this, funding approved in 2008 towards three homeless-related rehabilitation projects will continue in 2009 in the amount of €500,000. The Deputy should also note that the National Drug Rehabilitation Implementation Committee was set up late 2008 by the HSE. The Senior Rehabilitation Coordinator to chair and lead the work of the group was also appointed at that time. A number of meetings have been held to date and I look forward to seeing the outcomes of their deliberations over the coming months and years.
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