Dormant Accounts Fund Applications Now Open
Minister of State for Regional Economic Development, Michael Ring T.D., has announced a new round of funding of €1.75 million from the Dormant Accounts Fund to support social enterprises that provide services to, or employment opportunities for, disadvantaged people.
Organisations can apply for funding to cover capital costs and capacity building measures.
The Dormant Accounts Act 2001, together with the Unclaimed Life Assurance Policies Act 2003 and the Dormant Accounts (Amendment) Acts 2005-2012, provide a framework for the administration of unclaimed accounts in credit institutions (i.e. banks, building societies and An Post) and unclaimed life assurance policies in insurance undertakings.
The legislation introduced a scheme for the disbursement of funds that are unlikely to be reclaimed, but only for the purposes of programmes or projects to assist:
- the personal and social development of persons who are economically or socially disadvantaged;
- the educational development of persons who are educationally disadvantaged; or
- persons with a disability.
The eligible costs will generally fall under the following categories:
- Funding is available for capital costs and capacity building supports. Capacity building grants are only available as part of an application for capital costs.
- The Social Enterprise measure under the Dormant Accounts Fund will support social enterprises that provide services to, or employment opportunities for, disadvantaged people, particularly in rural areas.
- The key objective of a social enterprise is to attain one or more social objectives, with any profit/surplus seen as the means to ensure sustainability.
- A Social Enterprise is defined as “An enterprise that trades for social/societal purpose, where at least part of its income is earned from its trading activity, is separate from Government and where the surplus is primarily re-invested in the social objective.” – Forfas: Social Enterprise in Ireland, Sectoral Opportunities and Policy Issues, July 2013
- Machinery and specialised equipment (new machinery and replacements or upgrades are eligible for consideration),
- Refurbishment costs (e.g. an extension of a workspace),
- Supports to build organisational capacity in the areas of management skills, governance, marketing and sales, and business strategy.
The maximum grant available for capital costs is €75,000 and the minimum grant is €20,000.
The closing date for applications is 1pm on Wednesday 15 March 2017.