Public representatives in Clare have highlighted what’s described as a “myriad of challenges” faced by rural communities in Clare since the onset of the pandemic.
Figures presented to Clare County Council’s Rural Development Committee have shown an increase in the number of families struggling with financial issues and isolation.
It’s led to calls for greater supports.
As a recent meeting, the county’s Rural Development Committee reviewed the county’s COVID response and it’s rural development strategy.
During the discussions it emerged that while the pandemic has seen an upsurge in people working from home, many of them doing so from rural areas of Clare, there has also been an increase in the number of people struggling with isolation and financial issues.
Councilors heard of challenging issues, including around 375 cases of families reaching out for help to cover basic costs like food and fuel.
Chair of the Committee, Maghera Fianna Fáil Councillor Pat Hayes believes a coordinated approach is needed from the local authority and other agencies to assist rural communities struggling with the fallout of lockdown.
Muintir na Tíre believes the answer to supporting people through the pandemic comes from within the community itself.
The organisation is rolling out an initiative in five counties on a pilot basis and it’s hoped this will be rolled out nationally if successful.
The Community Suppport Reigster will rely on members of the community to identify people who need support and provide help with things like delivering fuel or a simple telephone call.
CEO of Muintir, Niall Garvey from Inagh, says no-one should be left behind.