It feels like everything is changing and with that change comes uncertainty and challenge. For some regions in Northern Ireland the changes over the last 20 years have brought vision, voice, activism, resources, capacity building, investments and an articulation of needs for local communities. These communities are coping and coordinating when things go wrong in their areas. They understand how things work and why, and they are not afraid to use all their resources to get what they need or to build what they need. They are confident and connected communities supporting and helping others to move to being the same. For others the picture is as bleak or as grim as it was in 1996, if not more so. Their reality has been one of further marginalisation from decision-makers, resources and political representation. They find themselves not only without community cohesion but with little vision and hope for the … (To read the full article, subscribe below)


Kate Clifford is director of the Rural Community Network in Northern Ireland