MINUTES OF THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE MEETING OF THE COMMUNITY RELATIONS COUNCIL ON 18TH SEPTEMBER 2003 AT 2.00PM AT CRC OFFICES, 8 LINEN GREEN CENTRE, MOYGASHEL, DUNGANNON (COMFIRMED)
Dr David Stevens, Maggie Bryson, Maria Miskelly, Cathy Gormley-Heenan, Paul Smyth, Eamonn Deane, Colin Craig
Sarah O'Neill & Claudine Walls
03 IN ATTENDANCE:
Jim Dennison, Patricia Armstrong, Libby Smit
04 GENERAL BUSINESS
Members were welcomed and apologies noted.
Minutes of previous meeting were checked for accuracy and agreed by Members.
Committee welcomed Libby Smit to the post of Research Officer.
Financial Update – N+2
Staff are currently working strenuously to achieve the N+2 spend target set by the SEUPB. Given the recent change in the exchange rate, the Programme must spend an additional £200k on the original N+2 figure. This obviously puts even more pressure to encourage /process project spend, although members were informed that any vouched expenditure would be eligible and within the appropriate guidelines.
06 BRIEFING PAPER
Members were informed that Libby Smit has been appointed as Research Officer within the European Programme.
To date, there are 7 applications pending. Two of the submissions will be considered today, with the others put to Committee in November (or early December).
Members were informed that many/most of the circulated monitoring/evaluation forms have been returned. The level and range of work currently being undertaken is very encouraging, with many fulfilling (if not surpassing) project aims/objectives. Further information is contained in the Briefing Paper.
As Myran Pollock has resigned from the European Programmes Review Panel, Committee welcomed the suggestion that Caroline Wilson be co-opted onto the Review Panel. At present there is only one review outstanding, that of The Maydown Ebrington Group. A date for the next Review Panel will be arranged as soon as possible.
Peace II Seminars
Members were informed that the European Programme has submitted a proposal to SEUPB to organise and coordinate a series of Peace II seminars. CRC has requested c. £140,000 to employ a full-time worker for a two-year period. Members will be updated on the application at the next Committee meeting.
Members were informed that PriceWaterhouseCooper (PWC), commissioned by SEUPB, has carried out a detailed systems audit of the Programme. PWC confirmed that the Programme's systems were robust and working well, and indicated that some may be recommended to other IFBs/LSPs as models of good/best practice.
07 APPLICATIONS ASSESSMENTS
KAREN PAARZ - 03/0310/12364
Eamonn Deane declared a conflict of interest and absented himself from the meeting.
Members discussed this application and reviewed all materials which had been submitted in relation to it. It was agreed that, on the basis of the information provided, Measure 2:1 assistance could not be made available, as the research aspect of the project does not appear to be a main component of the overall proposal. This application has been adapted from an Active Citizenship programme that was run in Philadelphia with young African-American and Latino adults. The applicant wishes to adopt the American programme to a NI context. Concerns were raised by Committee members about whether the application was more mainstream than research specific, especially in relation to the costs involved in running two offices. It was suggested that the applicants could apply to Measure 4.1 for the International aspect of the project. It was suggested by the Committee that if the applicant secured funding they could reapply to Measure 2.1 for the research aspect of this proposal.
RUTH JAMIESON - 03/0267/01471
No conflicts of interest were declared.
Members discussed this application and reviewed all materials which had been submitted in relation to it. It was agreed that, on the basis of the information provided, Measure 2:1 assistance could not be made available as the proposal would address beneficiaries' experiences, perspectives, and the diversity of these things within a single community, but would not directly deal with issues of community division and diversity. The applicant proposes to work with women from a republican rural background as it is suggested that women are reluctant to express their opinion etc in relation to their trauma. The dissemination strategy is wide-ranging. Whilst it was suggested that the proposal is a good idea, it doesn't address community division and diversity and did not clearly demonstrate that reconciliation is a long term goal. It was proposed that the application needs to develop a reconciliation aspect. Committee members suggested that the Reconciliation score from the Scoring Matrix is too high and should be a three instead of a four. Furthermore it was made clear by Committee members that other organisations such as RCN are doing similar work with women from a Protestant rural background.
UPPER SPRINGFIELD DEVELOPMENT TRUST - 02/0229/003522
No conflicts of interest were declared.
Members discussed this application and reviewed all materials which had been submitted in relation to it. It was agreed that, on the basis of the information provided, Measure 2:1 assistance could not be made available. Members agreed that the project did not clearly demonstrate that it met the reconciliation criteria. The application proposes to promote the Equality agenda among the community and voluntary sector. However, there are other organisations providing this type of work/training and it was unclear how the proposed work by USDT would be distinctive from that being carried out by the Equality Commission. Furthermore it was noted that the proposal did not provide enough content or detail in order to score highly in the Scoring Matrix.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Members were informed that the application from Derry City Council would be discussed at the following Committee meeting.
Date for the next EU Committee Meeting Tuesday 11 November 2003 at 10.00pm.
Members and staff thanked for their contributions.