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Participation & Engagement

Participation & Engagement

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Participation & Engagement

A sustainable community is one that puts its most vulnerable members at its centre. How are we planning for the most vulnerable in our community? What is being missed when these people are not represented at the decision-making table and when services within the community are not accessible?

Visioning Questions

Who are the most vulnerable in our community?


What would we do differently if we had the most vulnerable groups at the core of what we do?


If this is already our focus, who else in our community needs to take this on board so that everyone can participate?  

Visioning Activity

Host a public meeting with as many members of the community as possible to gather views and ideas on a topic that has emerged within the theme of Participation and Engagement.


Reach out to diverse groups to attend. Possible topics could include: rural depopulation, access to services, the representation of voices in the community or child friendly spaces.


Through this wider engagement, encourage the community to focus on actions that everyone can see themselves as having ownership of.

  • Develop ethical purchasing and travel policies for your organisation
    Encourage staff to avail of cycle-to-work scheme to help reduce your impact on the environment.
  • Carry out a waste audit for your organisation
    Learn more about the Food Waste Charter for Ireland and how you can sign up. See the template from Galway County Council on preventing food waste within organisations.
  • Carry out an energy audit for your organisation
    You can apply for a Better Energy Communities grant - Ireland’s national retrofit initiative. It's aimed at upgrading the energy efficiency and renewable energy usage of buildings and facilities.
  • Organise a workshop for households on how to create water harvesters for their home
    Organise a workshop on how to create water harvesters for homes locally.
  • Encourage people in the local community to sign up to an 'Eco-Pledge'
  • Make information available for households to to retrofit their homes
    There are a range of grants available through SEAI: and retrofit programme:
  • Facilitate a process of working towards becoming a Transition Town
    Check out:
  • Set up a community garden
    You can get support from or even apply for Energia 'Get Ireland Growing' funding from Grow It Yourself, e.g. clearing space for an inner-city community garden, putting a polytunnel on a school roof or creating a pond at an allotment.
  • Apply to become a Tidy Town
  • Develop a biodiversity plan for the local area, including measures to encourage pollinating insects"
    See what has been achieved by Ennis Tidy Town:
  • Invite your supermarket to host an information day on packaging and to offer recycling points for packaging waste
    See what Midleton Tidy Towns achieved:
  • Use the ‘See It Say It’ app from EPA to report pollution in the local area
    This is something local people can get involved with in the reporting:
  • Sign up to the Sustainable Energy Community network
    Your community can work towards becoming as energy efficient as possible:
  • Make 'Wild' any green spaces within your local community
    Consider wilding green spaces within your local community.
  • Work with local businesses to support them in their waste prevention, as well as raising awareness of hazardous waste and promote sustainable alternatives"
    Learn from what Carlow and Kilkenny county councils have created:
  • Arrange a community workshop on recycling
    Check out the Recycling Ambassador Programme from VOICE Ireland:
  • Organise a monthly birdwatch or wildflower walk
    For more information on free wildflower walks, visit: Birdwatch Ireland organise walks and other events on their website.
  • Link in with: European network showcasing what it is that people love about nature in their local area – invite someone locally to contribute a video!
  • Draw attention to nature!
    Organise a monthly bird watching morning/ wildflower walk/ other activity to draw attention to nature – if there is no one with local knowledge on these issues there are lots of online apps to assist with this!


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