Tús, the national Community Work Placement Programme, is now in its third year.   The programme is managed by local development companies such as Kilkenny LEADER Partnership (KLP) in conjunction with the Department of Social Protection. Its purpose is to help long-term unemployed people get back into the workforce by providing 12 month’s work experience while also contributing certain services of benefit to many participants and communities.

The Kilkenny Tús Programme focuses on high quality placements with skill-sets being closely matched with placement roles. For example, in Castlecomer, a participant who successfully completed a FÁS stonemason course has now been selected for a Tús placement building a stone wall on the grounds of Clogh church. A number of participants have already been offered full-time employment by their host organisations on completion of their Tús placement. The Kilkenny programme is supervised by KLP through its six Team Leaders: Mike Redmond, Derry Gahan, Liam Mooney, Seamus Davis and David Coughlan and Moira Duggan.

All work carried out under the Tús programme must benefit and enhance the community. The Tús programme in Castlecomer has provided a new polytunnel for community horticulture training.  The community of Mooneenroe welcomed the much needed paintwork to the walls in the parish also provided by Tús.

Community and voluntary organisations, charities or sporting bodies are eligible to apply to KLP to be included on its list of placement providers.  A broad range of project types may be eligible for Tús including energy conservation; social care; caretaking; renovation of community, recreation and sporting facilities; community administration; coaching for sporting activities and work in support of culture and heritage.