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Naas Engagers App Launch

On Saturday, 9th Sept, an innovative new community mapping project, called Naas Engagers, was launched at Naas Harbour during the Naas Wild Food Festival.   This project will provide an opportunity for the people of Naas to put forward and share ideas for the revitalisation & regeneration of Naas. A key part of this pilot project is a mobile phone App that has been developed by Space Engagers, supported by the Social Innovation Fund Ireland in association with Google. The Naas URBACT Local Group, is leading this project as part of an  European Union initiative, called “ The City Centre Doctor Project”, the aim of which is to develop a Naas Town Team and to plan for the regeneration of Naas .

Naas Engagers will enable local people to share stories and information about places in the town and to make suggestions as to how some of them could be reused or improved. The aim is to encourage people to think about their town and how they would like it to develop.

‘Naas is one of the first towns to be part of this community mapping project using an App and Kildare County  Council is absolutely delighted to be working in partnership with the URBACT Local Group and Space Engagers ’, said Sonya Kavanagh, Director of Services and Naas Municipal District Manager.  Aoife Corcoran and Philip Crowe of Space Engagers will be spending time in Naas over the next few months to deliver the project and they are keen to meet with local groups. ‘The key to the success of the App is the community’s involvement. This is an opportunity for people in Naas to share their stories & knowledge of the past, to tell what’s great about living in Naas, and to re-imagine what is possible for the future and the next generations’, observed Deirdre Mortell, Chief Executive of the Social Innovation Fund Ireland. In 2016 Space Engagers won an inaugural Think Tech Award, for its adaptation of technology to have a positive social impact in Ireland. Space Engagers has also recently worked with the Peter McVerry Trust. The Think Tech Award was presented in partnership with the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government and Google.org, the philanthropic arm of Google which invests in teams with bold ideas that create lasting global impacts.

 

The idea for the Naas project came from the URBACT Local Group, which was established last April as part of the European Union - City Centre Doctor Project - a project which focuses on reviving towns affected by their location in the shadow of larger urban centres.  Naas is Ireland’s partner in the City Centre Doctor Network, in which there are 9 European partners. According to Margharita Solon of McAuley Place and member of the Naas URBACT Local Group, involvement in the EU project provides a unique opportunity for us, the citizens to contribute to and participate in the revitalisation process to bring life and vibrancy back into the centre of Naas. ‘Our European partners all have similar issues to address. We share ideas and get support and guidance in the preparation of an Integrated Action plan for the Naas’, she continued ‘The Naas Engagers project will be important in contributing to the work of the URBACT Local Group and will have the added value of getting the people thinking about their town’, concluded Philip Crowe of Space Engagers .

The Naas Engagers App is now live so if you would like more information about the project please check out the Naas Engagers Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/NaasEngagers/ or alternatively contact Gerard Mackey in Kildare County Council at 045-980500 or by email  gmackey@kildarecoco.ie.

 

For more information on Space Engagers visit   www.spaceengagers.org.

 

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