SICAP is a programme aimed at reducing disadvantage and poverty in Ireland. It provides the building blocks for Local and Community Development. If you want to avail of the support offered by the SICAP programme, either as a local community group or individual,   then we encourage you to register for SICAP support. Staff will be present at the the following venues to provide information:


The SICAP aims “to tackle poverty and social exclusion through partnership and constructive engagement between Government and its agencies and people in disadvantaged communities”. In other words, it is designed to help people who experience poverty and social exclusion to develop the skills, confidence and contacts necessary to create change in their own lives and communities.

The programme prioritises marginalised people and groups within the most disadvantaged communities, which means that it targets those furthest from access to education, training and employment, and those at highest risk of social exclusion. The programme will continue to work with the target groups/areas and issues as prioritised under the previous programmes based on an identification and demonstration of analysis of local need.

Programme Goals

There are two key programme goals of the programme:

  1. Goal 1 - Supporting Communities
  2. Goal 2 - Supporting Individuals

Supporting communities through community development and social enterprise support:

  1. GRD has Community Development Officers based in Ballinasloe, Tuam and Rosmuc.  Officers engage with community groups in their own areas and offer support for groups to develop their skills through advice, mentoring, training and small grants. Training needs analysis conducted in disadvantaged areas and other community consultations and surveys have identified issues that groups want assistance with and GRD Officers work closely with other agencies to help address these.   
  2. GRD also supports the development of new and existing social enterprises. A Social Enterprise is an enterprise;that trades for a social purpose; where at least part of its income is earned from its trading activity; is separate from the government and where the surplus is primarily re-invested in the social objective. (Forfas 2013) Supports include training / mentoring (including access to the GRD on-line training suite), small scale grants and networking opportunities through the Galway Social Enterprise Network. The Education Officer of GRD works with schools to develop support programmes for children in outside the main school curriculum .

    SICAP Team Leader: 
    Aoibheann McCann       Athenry         Tel: 087 1129918     Email: amccann@grd.ie                                                                                                                      

  3. Community Development Officers: 

    Martin Ward                   Ballinasloe   Tel: 087  6217917    Email: mward@grd.ie   

    Emily Hughes                 Tuam          Tel: 087  6467879     Email: ehughes@@grd.ie                                                           (Melinda Coen Ryan on maternity leave)                                    

  4. Mícheál Mac Dhonnchadha  Rosmuc    Tel: 087 1946890      Email: macdonnchadha@grd.ie                

  5. Social Enterprise Officer:
    Patricia Kelly                   Athenry      Tel: 087 9131379      Email: patriciakelly@grd.ie

    Education Officer: 

    Elaine Quinn   Athenry      Tel: 087 7404655       Email: equinn@grd.ie

  6. Supporting individuals through the provision of training and support:

  7. GRD supports individuals through the provision of training and support. Development Officers based in our offices throughout the County work with individuals seeking to get into employment, education or training. We also have Lifelong Learning Officers providing employment skills related courses and also community based education. Our Youth Development Officer works exclusively with 16 - 25 year olds   and the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance Officer assist people who want to set up their own businesses.  Our Rural Resources Officer works with rurally isolated dwellers individually and in their communities.  GRD also has a Training and Development Officer providing in house training in job skills and a Training and Employment Liaison Officer who works to identify opportunities for training, work placement, apprenticeships & jobs.                                                       

  1. Development Officers:

  2. Marie Finnerty Ballinasloe Tel:087 1870689   Email: mfinnerty@grd.ie

  3. Deirdre Maloney Tuam Tel: 087 7035656        Email: dmaloney@grd.ie

  4. Deirdre Nic Dhonncha     Rosmuc Tel: 087 9695937      Email: dnicdhonncha@grd.ie

  5. Nórah Ní Cheannabháin Rosmuc Tel: 087 9740572 Email: nnicheannabhain@grd.ie

  6. Life Long Learning Officers:

  7. Freeda Garman Athenry Tel: 087 3674568 Email: fgarman@grd.ie

  8. Clara Cashman Portumna  Tel: 087 2430839 Email: ccashman@grd.ie

  9. Training & Development Officer:

  10. Donna Gleeson Ryan Tuam Tel: 087 2578192 Email:dgleeson@grd.ie

  11. Back to Work Enterprise Allowance Officer:

  12. Michael Burke Athenry Tel: 087 9167747 Email: mburke@grd.ie

  13. Rural Resource Officer:  

  14. Anne Cassidy              Athenry Tel: 087 7685711     Email: acassidy.grd.ie

  15. Youth Development Officer:

  16. James Applegate Athenry Tel: 087 1644508 Email: japplegate@grd.ie

  17. Training & Employment Liaison Officer:

  18. Martin Macdonald Athenry Tel: 087 0573643 Email: mmacdonald@grd.ie


For more details, please contact:

Galway Rural Development Company Ltd., Mellows Campus, Athenry, Co. Galway 

Telephone: 091 844335         Email: grd@grd.ie                                

The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) 2018-2022 is funded by the Irish Government through the Department of Rural and Community Development and co-funded by the European Social Fund under the Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning (PEIL) 2014-2020.  

Welcome to the Galway Rural Development website. Galway Rural Development, through the programmes we administer, will continue to work along with other agencies, groups and individuals around the county to improve the quality of life for all citizens in our area. We especially wish to work with those who are most in need of assistance, to provide real opportunities for people to gain significant improvements for themselves and their communities throughout rural Galway.

Funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development and the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection.