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Island episode?  The Government of Ireland is promoting desert island living

Island episode? The Government of Ireland is promoting desert island living

There are several islands off the west coast of Ireland. They have been struggling with a declining population since the mid-1990s. The government has now put in place financial incentives to encourage more people to settle there permanently.

The Irish government has launched a new policy for some islands off the west coast. It aims to stimulate population growth and offers generous financing for renovation.

The project, which will affect 23 islands, began two weeks ago, on June 7, on Arranmore Island off the west coast of County Donegal.

“For the islanders, that means: we want more people to work, live and raise families on the islands. We want more people to return to the islands,” said Heather Humphreys, Minister of State for Rural and Community Development.

The lack of jobs and poor access to public and social services hampered population growth. Among others, up to €84,000 will be provided for the reconstruction of dilapidated homes and €60,000 for the renovation of vacant homes.

“During the lockdown, we’ve seen people come back. If we can bring more people back, it will help schools and the economy,” says Noirin Oye Moldumhne, director of the Kumarchoman Oylan Arin Mohr cooperative.

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