Cross border organisations gather to kick-start cooperation project
Posted On: 18 Jul 2023
This month the three partner organisations of a new cross border cooperation project gathered for a successful kick-off residential in Killeavy Castle outside Newry.
Funded by the International Fund for Ireland’s Communities in Partnership Programme, Cross-Border: enACTing cooperation (CBenACT) is a pilot cross-border collaboration between the Centre for Cross Border Studies, Creative Spark (Dundalk) and Women’s Tec (Newry).
The project aims to: provide specific skills necessary to deliver cross-border projects of meaningful benefit for communities on both sides of the border; embed cross-border cooperation as a central pillar of each organisations’ work; and increasing mutual understanding and awareness of issues and challenges affecting communities on both sides of the border.
The residential, attended by staff and board members from the three organisations, facilitated the building of trust and relationships, an in depth understanding of the work of each organisation, and an appreciation of the issues and opportunities facing each organisation in their locality. Discussions included:
- How Women’s Tec’s hugely successful DIY Roadshow could be beneficial south of the border
- How cross-border insurance for equipment, staff and services may need to be considered for cross-border projects and any potential impacts of the UK’s impending Electronic Travel Authorisation scheme, and
- What learnings can be gained from the successful interactions between Creative Spark courses and Ireland’s state sponsored job seeker training programmes, a replica of which is not available in NI.
This is an 18-month project, leading to the design and initial implementation of a cross-border collaboration between Creative Spark and Women’s Tec, with a focus on the cross-border sharing of resources and skills to deliver training for women in non-traditional skills (e.g. plumbing, carpentry, tiling, electrics), women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths/Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths (STEM)/STEAM, as well as climate action as an area for community capacity-building. It will also produce an online training course for the development of cross-border cooperation projects that will be available on the CCBS website for use by other organisations beyond the lifetime of this project.