Behind Irish Lotto prizes and scratch cards– regional groups who take advantage of National Lottery game’s Excellent Causes Fund

Behind Irish Lotto prizes and scratch cards– regional groups who take advantage of National Lottery game’s Excellent Causes Fund

EACH WEEK we are praying that this will be the week our Lotto numbers are called.

But behind the prizes and the scratch cards are individuals who benefit without getting the best numbers.

 Around 4,000 groups benefit from National Lottery funding every year


Around 4,000 groups benefit from National Lotto funding every year

The National Lottery invests 30 c of every euro into their Great Causes Fund, which has been running because 1987.

Every year, almost 4,000 groups from sport, youth, health, welfare, education, arts, heritage and the Irish Language benefit from financing and more than EUR5.6 m has actually been spent on these causes since it began.

Here Nicola Bardon speaks with two regional groups who have actually benefited from the grants.

LIZ DUFFY, Creator of Shannonbridge Neighborhood Services Group, Offaly

Liz Duffy said backwoods require a ‘heart’ or people could go without seeing others for a very long time.

She set up the group in 2003 to find somewhere to collect individuals whenever they required to, after a local funeral hit house they had no place to capture up that didn’t involve a bar.

 Liz said the area is 'small and country,' but the centre gives it a focus


Liz said the location is ‘little and country,’ however the centre gives it a focus

She said: “We had a huge funeral service in the area and had nowhere to collect.

When the group started, they didn’t even have a proper chair however they started to obtain grants and won financing from the Lottery which made a huge distinction.

She added: “It implied we might build it up, get better equipment, chairs, tables. We revamped the cooking area and the toilets and made the place more comfortable.

” Now we have lunches, a big Christmas celebration, the regional GAA can use it, the Active Retirement Group.

” We even had a book launch, Laura Rate held her launch here and if we didn’t have the centre, she would have needed to leave the location.”

Liz said the area is “little and nation,” but the Centre provides it a focus.

” You require something to be the heart of a little village. If you do not have someplace to gather, you do not have a community.

” Now we can use it throughout Covid for meals on wheels and when it is gone, we can open once again for everybody to capture up.

” The Lotto were mighty to offer us this.

LORETTA YURICK Co-founder of the DanceTheatre of Ireland

Loretta and Robert Connor established the Dance Theatre of Ireland, an expert contemporary dance business and non-profit charity, in 1989.

Over 3,500 people of all ages participate in DTI’s dance activities throughout the year, and the Business provides 21 dance classes a week at its Centre for Dance in Dun Laoghaire.

 Loretta and Robert Connor founded the Dance Theatre of Ireland


Loretta and Robert Connor founded the Dance Theatre of Ireland

Thanks to the National Lottery, DTI was granted EUR3000 to support their Well-Dance for Seniors program, and EUR3000 to support our Dancing Well with Parkinson’s program. This assistance enabled DTI to dedicate more time and resources to these vitally-important programmes than was previously possible.

Loretta said: “We understand that there are 3 things that influence aging: a green diet plan, exercise and a social connection. Dance ticks two of those 3 boxes.

” It works on a cognitive level to assist the brain learn brand-new motor pathways and it works physically as you are using your whole body.

” There’s likewise the musical element and we understand that music raises our spirits and evokes memories.”

Since the Covid-19 pandemic, Loretta and her associates have been teaching classes online.

And she informed how many of DTI’s older individuals who can access the classes through Zoom are delighting in the social interaction, as well as the aerobic benefits.

She stated: “It’s not an ideal solution but we discovered it’s a way to nurture the needs of those who do have access. A number of those participating state that it’s the emphasize of their week.

” Much of our participants have conditions like osteoporosis, COPD, heart disease, lung conditions and dancing has actually changed their life.”


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Loretta informed how the beneficial dance classes would not be possible without the assistance of the National Lottery’s Excellent Causes fund.

She said: “As a non-profit arts organisation, you’re constantly having a hard time to fulfill expenditures. Given that the last economic crisis, the arts have actually struggled.

” To get the National Lottery game’s support means we can provide these programmes and expand other programmes. It’s a difficult time for the arts and charity sectors right now so this support is so important.”

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