The Red Card meets the Minister

Show Racism the Red Card made a presentation to the new Minister Mary White of the Office of the Minister for Integration.

Following the European Year Against Racism in 1997, Ireland formed the National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism (NCCRI). The NCCRI developed the National Action Plan Against Racism in 2005, which helped fund NGOs concerned with anti-racism and interculturalism. The Department of Justice also implemented funding for integration of immigrants to organizations and NGOs that could nationally, regionally, or strategically promote integration.
In 2007 SRTRC received €94,750 after a successful grant application. The funding allowed SRTRC to launch a poster campaign of 14 League of Ireland clubs, GAA teams, and basketball teams. This campaign developed community capacity to support integration through sport. Also, SRTRC created the Education Pack. The Education Pack is a multimedia resource featuring a DVD of high profile athletes such as Eamon Zayed and Joseph Ndo discussing their experiences with racism. It also includes classroom and football pitch activities that educate against racism and for integration.
In 2008, Ireland formed the Office for the Minister of Integration, but Ireland dropped the NCCRI, the National Action Plan Against Racism, and the funding for integration of immigrants. Instead, the Office for the Minister of Integration developed the Migration Nation: statement on integration strategy and diversity management. NGOs now receive less money, making SRTRC projects more difficult.
SRTRC remains a low cost high impact organization. In 2009, SRTRC raised €78,000 for projects, €15,000 from the Office of the Minister for Integration.   SRTRC hosted 6 training days in 2009 to teach professionals who work with young people how to implement the Education Pack. 130 people attended the training sessions.  Of a survey of 30 participants, 16 had delivered 154 workshops reaching 4,825 young people.
The events SRTRC aim to carry out this year and next year require €106,500. SRTRC hoped to receive as much funding as possible to maintain youth outreach, host integrating community events, and cover other expenses.
The SRTRC Project Coordinator, Garrett Mullan, delivered a presentation on the history of SRTRC and highlighted SRTRC events, mostly outreach events, and SRTRC positive contributions to the community.
Eamon Zayed, of the League of Ireland’s Sporting Fingal Football Club, then presented racism he has experienced on the pitch. A member of the SRTRC board, Dennis Hickie, who played rugby the Leinster and the Ireland  then closed the presentation explaining that funding from the Office of the Minister for Integration not only helps fund SRTRC events, but it gives SRTRC more profile when applying for other grants such as European grants.
Minister Mary White TD responded enthusiastically and expressed much interest in SRTRC and the SRTRC goals. In fact, Minister Mary White TD recently attended a conference in Spain that discussed racism and integration. The conference concluded that the two best ways to fight racism and promote integration were through education and sport, SRTRC’s exact angle.
She said she looks forward to working with SRTRC to promote integration and fight racism and may even attend schools with SRTRC.   She wants to help as much as she can, but must determine possible funding with the Civil Servants.
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