A total of £1,448,122 has been allocated to the Ulster GAA from the government's Sports Sustainability Fund. It was part of £10M that has been awarded from the fund with £15M still left to be awarded.

 The funding allocated to Ulster GAA will help the organisation in its quest to rebound from the financial hardships posed by Covid-19 and will be vital to the re-establishment of delivery programmes that have been severely curtailed over the past year.

Armagh v Cavan in the National Football League 2020. Photograph: Columba O'Hare/
Armagh v Cavan in the National Football League 2020. Photograph: Columba O'Hare/

Welcoming the announcement Ulster GAA Chief Executive Officer and Provincial Secretary Brian McAvoy said “I wish to sincerely thank the Executive, the Communities Minister and her Department and the team at Sport NI for the establishment and administration of this Fund which is a welcome boost for the sporting community.

“Ulster GAA has worked closely with Sport NI in relation to our submission and we are pleased to learn that our application for £1.44m has been successful. This is a welcome development following a year in which we have been financially challenged and where our revenue streams will continue to be severely dented for a considerable period to come.

“I thank the staff at Ulster GAA who prepared our submission and who worked diligently with our counties and clubs in ensuring that their applications and accompanying documentation were consistent with the criteria of the Fund.

“The applications of our constituent units remain under consideration and we anticipate that Sport NI will be in a position to allocate a further tranche of funding to successful applicants before the end of this month.  We will advise our units accordingly when further detail is made available to us."

Commenting on the awards Antoinette McKeown, Sport NI CEO, said “The sports sector has played a critical role in supporting communities throughout this pandemic and our sector is needed now, more than ever, to help our communities emerge from this pandemic.  The Sports Sustainability Fund along with our other Covid 19 responses has enabled our local sports clubs, governing bodies and sports organisations to survive and prepare for a safe return to sport”.

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey welcomed the awards saying  “I am delighted that the sports sector is to receive more financial support through the Sports Sustainability Fund. I know that the £25m fund is a critical to the sector and that the Governing Bodies and clubs urgently need it.

"The sector has shown outstanding resilience over the past year particularly when the Covid restrictions decimated their ability to generate their own income through ticket sales, sponsorship, running competitions and hospitality."

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