A new Strategic Plan to support social inclusion, enhance community development and combat social disadvantage has been launched by Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys.

THE Pobal Strategic Plan 2022 – 2026 sets out a five-year roadmap focusing on supporting social inclusion and improving outcomes for those most disadvantaged in society.

The Strategic Plan was developed by Pobal, in consultation with its staff, the Pobal Board and external stakeholders, and sets a clear and ambitious direction, which will both integrate and incorporate the strategic objectives with a series of practical and deliverable actions and activities.

Minister Humphreys said: “For almost 30 years, Pobal has made a significant contribution to our economy and society in supporting Government to deliver programmes to some of the most marginalised and disadvantaged individuals and communities in Ireland.

“My Department looks forward to assisting and supporting Pobal to deliver on the important objectives and actions identified over the period of this Strategy and to see the positive impact this will have on Pobal’s continued delivery of services on behalf of Government.”

Rosarii Mannion, Chairperson of Pobal, commented: “The new strategic plan sets out how Pobal intends to build on our significant progress to date and to challenge ourselves further in moving towards our vision to create an equal and inclusive society in partnership with Government and communities. In developing and launching this Strategic Plan, we are confident that it clearly outlines what Pobal hopes to achieve in the next five years to support and drive improvement for communities, families, individuals and children.

“Pobal’s new strategy sets out a five-year roadmap for embedding continuous quality improvement at the heart of our work. Progress on our new strategy will be continuously measured, evaluated and reported on and will identify areas for further improvement and to reassess the existing system to ensure that Pobal is well positioned to respond to future challenges.”

Minister Humphreys also launched the Pobal 2021 Annual Report and Annual Financial Statements.

The report shows that Pobal administered 38 programmes in the areas of Social Inclusion and Equality, Inclusive Employment and Enterprise, and Early Learning and Care, allocating circa €765 million in funding.

Launching the Annual Report, the Minister stated: “This report clearly shows the key role played by Pobal working on behalf of Government, in administering and managing schemes and programmes funded by my own department and others as well as using its expertise to provide high quality services, projects and research to Government.”

Pobal CEO Anna Shakespeare added: “I am very pleased by the findings in this Annual Report which not only shows a growth in the amount of funding Pobal distributes to local and national community and voluntary organisations, social enterprises and early learning and care services, but also demonstrates our ability to undertake new programmes on behalf of a growing number of Departments.

“The report also clearly shows Pobal’s role as a unique and highly skilled organisation with extensive expertise in designing and developing programmes as well as providing a range of additional services to Government.”

To read the Pobal Strategic Plan 2022 – 2026 in full, click here.