Community Benefit Funds

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Managing Community Benefit Funds

Our range of services enables our clients (renewable energy companies) and communities to develop long term, sustainable projects that serve the needs of each local community. We have developed a user-friendly on-line support and application system (individually branded for each investor), backed up by a highly professional and experienced team who can guide community volunteers through the process of developing applications or drawing down funds.  We also work with those who have successfully accessed and utilised these funds to generate short case-studies and reports for the purposes of sharing these with our clients.

To learn more please watch this short video.

Supporting Renewable Energy Producers

In a relatively short period of time, SECAD has expanded its Community Benefit Fund management capability and now provides GMO services to companies operating in the renewable energy sector and more recently to funds associated with large infrastructure projects. SECAD has invested heavily into the development of its GMO services and in doing so has developed a robust and effective GMO model.  To learn more please watch this short video.

Supporting Communities to maximise the impact of Community Benefit Funds

Over the past five years, SECAD has helped create positive relationships between renewable energy developers and communities, facilitating to date investment into 800 community-based projects across the Island of Ireland. To see a small sample of the types and ranges of projects and investments please watch this short video.

SECAD’s knowledge of local, national and EU Investment funding (and advising communities of these opportunities) has led to the development of large-scale legacy projects.  This has been achieved by using Community Benefit Funds as matching finance for public funds and agreeing a multi-annual allocation towards the most impactful projects in each area.  To learn more please watch this short video.

Click here to read summaries about some of the projects that have been supported through Community Benefit Funds.

Local Evaluation Panels (Creation and Management)

Developing a sense of local priorities in terms of community needs is important from the outset.  SECAD has partners (fellow Local Development Companies) operating across every county in Ireland.  Through this network and others such as the Local Authority Public Participation Network, SECAD can determine with the Sustainable Energy Developer specific areas of focus for funds.  Another mechanism to support greater local involvement (and therefore clarity in terms of local priorities) is to establish a ‘Local Evaluation Panel’ who will have a role in determining how the investment should be utilised for their region. To learn more please watch this short video.

Working towards having the best supports in place

SECAD is constantly examining ways to improve supports to our clients (renewable energy companies) and the communities that should benefit from their relationship.  SECAD is well placed to continue to expand and adapt our services to ensure a real and meaningful impact at community level.  Additionally, SECAD has the in-house expertise and skills to explore and develop longer term community development plans, which have the potential to enable legacy projects and innovative financial solutions to emerge and will have a greater positive impact on local communities.