The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (“BAI”) has today (24th June) launched its Community Broadcasting Support Scheme 2014. This year, an allocation of €30,000 is available for the funding of the Scheme.
The aim of the Scheme is to award funding to enable community radio and television broadcasters to assess the operation and effectiveness of their existing services and to develop capacity within their franchise areas. Evaluations can focus on either internal issues e.g. developing or reviewing managerial, strategic or organisational policies or procedures, or external issues such as developing or improving community relations or appraising target audiences.
There are a number of new elements to the Scheme in 2014. Firstly, the BAI will assign 20% of the total amount of Scheme funding for those licenced community radio and television stations that have yet to apply for or receive funding from the Scheme. The aim of this initiative is to encourage new participants to seek development opportunities within their stations. Secondly, the BAI has introduced a condition that successful applicants will be required to follow-up their BAI-funded project with a Review Report no later than 6 months after the project’s completion. The aim of this additional step in the Scheme is for broadcasters to evaluate progress and identify ‘lessons learned’ from the process.
Commenting on the launch of this year’s Scheme, Michael O’Keeffe, the BAI’s Chief Executive said: “the BAI is pleased to continue to provide funding to community radio and television broadcasters through the 2014 Scheme. The Community Broadcasting Support Scheme is regarded as being of great benefit to community broadcasters through its provision of funding support to aid their growth and development. A particular focus this year for the BAI is to concentrate on those stations that have yet to apply for or receive Scheme funding which is why 20% of the funds are being ring-fenced for this purpose.”
The Scheme is operated by the BAI through its Sectoral Learning and Development function. The closing date for the submission of completed applications to the BAI is 21st July 2014.