Kircubbin Regeneration Programme
UCIT has provided social finance to make up the shortfall in the financing package required for the restoration of Maxwell’s Courtyard in the centre of Kircubbin.
The restoration has been a major milestone for Kircubbin Regeneration Programme.
Within the new property are prime commercial units and offices, a gallery and craft shop, designer craftspeople at work, a podiatrist and community function rooms for hire.
Newhill Firststeps Childcare Centre
Newhill Youth and Community Centre Association was established in 1974, taking its name from the two main areas in West Belfast to which it provides its services, Dermot Hill and New Barnsley.
The Association launched Newhill Childcare in 1990 which operated out of two port-a-cabins.
In 2005 the Association where successful in accessing funding from Big Lottery and Belfast Local Strategy Partnership to construct a new, purpose built childcare facility. When the group encountered a shortfall in funding for the building project they approached UCIT for social finance.
The launch of the new centre took place in October 2006. The larger, modern premises has enabled the organisation to move from part time into full time day care and greatly increase the number of children it is able to provide care for.
"If it was not for Ulster Community Investment Trust our project could have had a major setback - UCIT were able to provide the shortfall and direction which allowed the project to proceed. The staff were also able to approach the situation from a community angle and made the whole loan process very understandable."
Christine Gormley, Centre Manager, Newhill First Steps Child Care Centre Company
Age Concern Cookstown
UCIT provided social finance to Age Concern Cookstown towards the purchase of a new Mini bus. The new bus will enable Age Concern, a community enterprise, to provide a daily transport service for all those wishing to make use of the organisation’s social and recreational activities which include a luncheon club and monthly tea dances.
A £5,000 deposit for the bus was raised through the proceeds of a gala ball with the remainder of the cost made up from a contribution from VIVA Bingo and social finance from UCIT.
"We really appreciate the loan and support which we have received from UCIT. The ioan has been essential in funding a bus so that we can provide transport to older people who would otherwise be isolated."
Elaine McDowell, Manager, Age Concern Cookstown
Castledawson Development Enterprises Ltd
In 1997, a group of people from the Castledawson area came together to address the problems of economic and social disadvantage in the area. The group identified the redevelopment of Castledawson House as an opportunity for a community regeneration project, which could be a flagship to encourage further investment in the area.
The group were successful in putting together a funding package and applied to UCIT for social finance to make up the shortfall.
The official opening of Castledawson House, took place in June 2005. The prominent, historic building now provides 12 en-suite bedrooms plus a restaurant and bar which can exploit the visitor potential of the village.
Feeny Economic Development Ltd
Feeny Economic Development Limited was established in July 1998 with the aim of improving the Feeny area through a range of socially and economically orientated projects.
The organisation has recently been successful in securing social finance from UCIT to provide the shortfall in the funding package required for the development of an Enterprise Centre and residential accommodation. The new social enterprise will transform a derelict and visually prominent site in the middle of the village and provide much needed community, workspace, office and retail facilities.
Community Places (formerly Community Technical Aid) was established in 1984 to provide professional planning and architectural services to community and voluntary groups in Northern Ireland. In order to facilitate their operations and enable future expansions, this Social Enterprise identified the need to relocate its office base. The organisation approached UCIT and was successful in securing social finance to purchase a new property at Downshire Place, off Great Victoria Street, Belfast. The organisation moved into their new premises in October 2006.
"Ulster Community Investment Trust understood our set up and what we were trying to achieve right from the outset. Other lenders didn't seem to understand our mixed economy of grant aid and earned income and, unlike UCIT, they offered little reassurance that they would provide flexibility or support if we ever need it. We also like the fact that UCIT don't charge administration fees so we can budget with more certainty and know there aren't any surprises lurking around the corner"
Colm Bradley, Director, Community Places
If you would like to see a list of the community organisations and social enterprises we have helped through the provision of social finance, please click on the link below:
List of clients