Young musicians at the 50th Comhaltas Celebration at the Top of the Town recently


The AGM of the Athea Community First Responders (CFR) will take place on Wednesday 25th January at 8pm in the Con Colbert Hall. Everyone is welcome.

Grant Support for Walking Tracks from Healthy Ireland

The GAA is delighted to announce a once-off funding opportunity from Healthy Ireland designed to make community walking tracks located on GAA grounds more accessible to more people.

Open to GAA, LGFA, and Camogie clubs in the Republic of Ireland, the €800,000 funding is designed to make existing walking tracks more accessible to persons with mobility issues, such as older persons and wheelchair users. Funding may also cover the upgrading or installation of lighting designed to prolong the hours of usage particularly during the dark winter


Closing Date for Applications is Tuesday 31st of January 2023.


The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

There was an item on the news this morning detailing the growing gap between rich and poor in the world today. The vast majority of the world’s wealth is in the hands of a tiny minority who could never spend their money if they lived multiple lifetimes. This does not feel right when there is so much starvation and poverty in certain countries where drought, famine and war have taken their toll on the population. It was surprising to find out that Irish people, per capita, are amongst the richest in the world. We have 17 people with over 1 billion, some with over 10 billion. There are over 1400 millionaires also which would lead us to believe that we live in a very prosperous country but, when you look at the state of the health service and public housing, it is easy to see that those with the most money are not paying their fair share of tax. There is a great argument to be made for a wealth tax and it is not begrudgery but it cannot be right that somebody working on average wages has to pay about 20% of their wages while those at the top of the ladder pay about 1%. If we want a fair and just society then everyone has to pay their fair share.  Western governments have been slow to introduce wealth taxes because they believe in capitalism in the hope that people who have a lot of money will invest it in business and create employment, the trickle down effect, but it does not really work that way. Unfortunately the vast amount of wealth in the world is just lying there doing nothing. At one time Kings and Queens owned everything until people revolted, as they did in France and Russia and communism was born. The idea of communism is that all people are equal but in practice it doesn’t work like that either. In Animal Farm, George Orwell wrote “all animals are equal but some are more equal than others”.  The problem with communism is that it is run by human beings and humans are greedy and corrupt sometimes when they are given power.  What is needed is a kind of half way house between capitalism and communism which will encourage people to create wealth but also ensure that nobody is left in poverty or need.  I personally think that there should be a limit put on the amount of personal wealth any one person can hold at any given time. Any excess should be heavily taxed and invested in health, housing etc.  If there is to be a wealth tax it will have to be done on a world wide basis otherwise  the super wealthy will just move to a country that does not tax them. This will not be easy to do but at least all the EU countries should consider it.

I got a message lately with a link saying “look what I found”. Because it was from somebody I knew well I opened the link and could not make anything out of the contents. A day later, members of my own family told me my account had been hacked and I had to go through the process of changing my passwords and deleting the link to my contacts. I found out since that it was somebody near Portlaoise on Sunday, January 14th. This is just a short time after my Credit Card was compromised. The first I knew about the problem was when Netflix contacted me to say that they weren’t able to collect their monthly premium. Then two other regular payments to other companies were missed. I tried to make a couple of purchases online but each time I wasn’t allowed to complete the transaction. I eventually contacted the bank and they put me in touch with the credit card company.  I sat listening to music while they put me on to somebody who would deal with the problem after I had to give all the card information and a security question, name and date of birth. The next person asked me for the same details again and put me on hold for a few minutes to see what was wrong. She told me there was nothing wrong with my card and she would transfer me to internet security so, more music to listen to. By now I knew the turn off by heart as I sat in the bank watching the customers coming and going. After a long time I heard a very welcome voice who told me that the good news was she did not want any more personal details but the bad news was that somebody had tried to use my card details at 5.30am on the 6th of December.  They had one figure wrong on the expiry date but because they felt it was suspicious they put a hold on the card. The best way forward was to scrap the card altogether and get a new one. It just shows how careful we have to be. I have no ideal how they got my details but I do buy stuff online and of course my card details are given to whatever company I am buying from. There is also the possibility that some of the sites are bogus even though they seem to have an Irish domain. The scammers are forever on the lookout for a loophole so be careful and make sure you are dealing with a legitimate company before revealing details.


Community and Voluntary Sector Energy Support Scheme

Closing Date: Friday, 20 January 2023, 3pm

The Community and Voluntary Energy Support Scheme (CVESS) launched on the 21 November to provide for a once-off payment to eligible charities and community and voluntary sector organisations towards their energy costs for 2022. Given the level of interest, the scheme will re-open for applications until Friday, 20 January 2023 at 3pm (15:00 hrs). Organisations that have an application in draft will be able to complete and submit their application.  Organisations that have already submitted their application will not be able to reapply.  Please note that the application process for organisations with multiple facilities or branches has been updated.

Who Can Apply?

A community and voluntary organisation or charity that does not generate income from trading or commercial activities.

Who Can’t Apply

Organisations included on the following list of Ineligible Organisations are not eligible to apply under CVESS.

If you are eligible to apply under any of the following Government Energy Support Schemes delivered by other Government Departments and Agencies, you are not eligible to apply under CVESS. A brief description of those schemes can also be viewed HERE.

How To Apply

Application form and guidance
Bill Schedule
Facility or Branch List Template

To submit an application, please use the CVESS Application Portal