KLP Social Enterprises in Kilkenny has played a vital role in the social and economic fabric of rural communities. The stunning outdoor venue, Ballykeeffe Amphitheatre has become a focal point of Kilkenny’s music and art scene. This venue has hosted a range of cultural events, from music concerts to theatre productions, in a stunning natural setting. The Castlecomer Community Childcare provides high-quality childcare services that are affordable and accessible to local families, supporting working parents and nurturing young children. Graiguenamanagh’s Barrow Valley Activities Hub is a vibrant community center that offers a variety of educational and recreational activities, as well as support services for people of all ages and backgrounds.

In Kilkenny, the loss of over 20 village shops in the past decade left a void in community connectivity and social networking. Kilkenny LEADER Partnership’s (KLP) investment in community-based shops, that incorporates tearooms and playgrounds, has been a boon for rural localities The first community-led shop KLP worked with was in Crosspatrick, which indicated the potential for this model in other villages. KLP held the first Rural Community Retail Conference “Counter Revolution” in 2014. This conference addressed the many important roles that community shops offer to rural localities and aimed to inspire rural communities by providing information and workshop support. Following the conference KLP went on to fund Ballyhale’s , Windgap’s, and Muckalee’s community shop. KLP is talking to communities in Glenmore, Clara, Dunnamaggin and right around the county about doing the same. Community-led shops and cafés have proven again to be a wonderful outlet for our rural communities.

Social enterprises not only enrich the lives of local residents, but also contribute to the economic and social development of the wider Kilkenny region. If you are a community group with an idea for a Community Social Enterprise please contact our SICAP Enterprise team to discuss options.