Historic Portarlington building fund receives special grant

Diageo Ireland has announced that St Paul’s Building Fund in Portarlington has been awarded €1000 to enable a new heating system to be installed as the previous electric heating system was deemed unsafe.

Diageo Ireland has announced that St Paul’s Building Fund in Portarlington has been awarded €1000 to enable a new heating system to be installed as the previous electric heating system was deemed unsafe.

The modifications to the historic church, which has links stretching back to the time of French Huguenots, means that the church will be able to continue being used throughout the winter by all the community.

The award has been made through the Diageo Ireland “Gifted” programme which is now in its third year. The Gifted programme, which runs on an annual basis, allows Diageo employees who volunteer with local community groups or charities to nominate these groups for a donation from Diageo Ireland.

The applicants had to provide details of how a donation from Diageo Ireland would be put to good use by their respective group or charity. All of the nominations were then considered at length by Diageo Ireland, with Business in the Community assisting in this process. Finally, a total of 18 groups were chosen, with ten groups receiving €1,000 and a further eight receiving a grant of €5,000.

The Gifted programme has awarded a wide selection of charities and community organisations, and the successful organisations are based in Dublin, Galway, Kilkenny, Cork, Waterford, Laois, Meath, Louth and Kildare.

Sandra Mathews, a member of the St. Paul’s fundraising committee and a Brewing Quality Manager in Diageo, commented, “A faulty heating system necessitated the closure of the church last winter and this award means that we can proceed with installation of a new heating system sooner than expected and in time for a planned ICA concert just before Christmas. We are delighted and indeed grateful to Diageo for their generous support.”

David Smith, Country Director, Diageo Ireland, Diageo Ireland, commented, “I am delighted that for the third year running, Diageo, through the Gifted programme, is able to support 18 very worthy local organisations across the country. Throughout Ireland, Diageo employees are giving their time on a voluntary basis to carry out indispensable work with local community groups and charities. This valuable work is making a big difference in these communities and the Gifted programme gives Diageo the opportunity to echo and reward this commitment.”

In addition to the Gifted programme, Diageo run a number of other programmes to support communities across Ireland. Earlier this year, through the Arthur Guinness Fund, Diageo awarded €700,000 to ten social entrepreneurs who are working to make Ireland a better place for everybody by using innovative social solutions. Diageo also runs a ‘Double Your Fundraising’ scheme, where Diageo will match money raised for charity by staff up to a maximum amount of €1,000.