Public can vote on how funds are allocated in new project

The Cork City Public Participation Network (‘PPN’) has launched a  grant scheme for its members where the public will have the final say on how the funds are allocated.

Public Participation Network logo

The PPN is a contact-point for Cork City Council to consult  with non-profit groups and organisations on new plans, strategies, policies, services, and other community supports.

The main goal of the ‘Unheard Voices Scheme’ is to test out participatory grant-making in an Irish context. While participatory budgeting and grant-making have been growing across Europe, they have not been tried in Ireland yet. This is a first for the city and country.

Participatory grant-making and budgeting systems allow the public to have a direct say in how public funds are allocated.

Cork City PPN is a publically funded independent body that is partnering with Atlantic Social Labs, Cork City Council, and Enterprise Ireland on this project.

Cork City PPN Coordinator ,Yvonne Murphy said:

‘We are delighted to be leading the way with this scheme. Our mandate is about promoting public participation in decision-making and the goal is to see that extend to greater involvement for the public in local government budgeting. This Grant Scheme is a way for us to test the ground and make the case for that, so it’s very exciting.’

With grant amounts ranging from €400 to €750, Cork City PPN is hopeful the Unheard Voices Scheme will appeal to eligible community & voluntary organisations across the city. And, while solely open to Cork City PPN Members, they underlined: ‘We are always open to new members and would be happy to accommodate any group or organisation that would like to join so they can take part in this scheme.’

For more details on Unheard Voices or Cork City PPN, contact Cork City PPN Coordinator at, 086 142 2747.

How the Scheme Works:

Applicants complete and submit a short application form to Cork City PPN by 6pm on Thursday 23 May.

A shortlist of 6 will be selected by a panel composed of a representative from:
Cork City PPN
Cork City Council
Atlantic Social Labs

Those who are shortlisted will work with video production partners StoryTracks to create a video pitching the project they want to fund.
Videos will be placed online for the public to view and vote on using a voting platform created by communications partners One Step Closer.
The number of votes received by each organisation will determine whether organisations receive a grant top up of €150, €250, or €500.
Each of the 6 shortlisted applicants will also receive a basic grant of €250, so the grants available are worth €400, €500, and €750.