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Minister David Stanton encourages graduates to apply for new €500,000 start-up fund

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Fine Gael TD for Cork East and Minister of State at the Department of Justice, David Stanton, is calling on recent graduates to apply for the Government’s new €500,000 Competitive Start Fund. The fund to encourage graduates with early-stage start-ups has been launched by the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys.

“Final year students and graduates with a third-level qualification within the last three years, who have a start-up company, can now apply for the Government’s new start-up fund. Up to 10 successful applicants will be awarded up to €50,000 each”, said Minister Stanton.

“The goal of this new fund is to assist start-up companies that have the capacity to succeed in global markets. It will support high potential start-ups who employ more than 10 people and achieve €1 million in export sales within three years. It is aimed at those working across manufacturing and internationally traded services sectors including cloud computing, enterprise software, cleantech, gaming, mobile, apps and life sciences.

“Fine Gael’s Action Plan for Jobs has overseen a steady reduction in unemployment from a peak of 16% in 2012 to 6% in March 2018 with Cork County experiencing a 14% decrease year on year. A major part of Action Plan for Jobs is encouraging entrepreneurship. Aside from providing financial assistance, this new initiative provides a platform for innovative entrepreneurs and start-up companies to progress their businesses with business support and networking.

“Applicants must apply though Enterprise Ireland at www.enterprise-ireland.com/graduatecsf where there is further information on the fund and eligibility criteria. In addition to written online applications, companies will be asked to prepare an online video pitch. The deadline for receipt of applications is 3pm, Tuesday, 24th April 2018.

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Cork St Patrick’s Festival 15th to 18th March with over 50,000 visitors to attend the Parade on March 17th

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DKANE 20/02/2019 REPRO FREE Dancer Claudia Sargent and Martha Lopez pictured at the mural on Water St., Cork by artist Garreth Joyce for the launch of the Cork St Patrick’s Festival 2019. Organised by Cork City Council, the festival runs from March 15 to 18 next, with the parade starting at 1pm on Sunday March 17. See www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie
Pic Darragh Kane Photography

Organised by Cork City Council, The Cork St. Patrick’s Festival will take place from March 15th to March 18th 2019, with over 50,000 visitors expected to attend the Cork St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Sunday March 17th, celebrating the theme ‘Stories of Cork’.

Throughout the festival weekend, Cork will be a hive of activity with traditional Irish music from the Lee Sessions, exhibitions celebrating Irish culture, plus theatre, music, guided tours and talks.

The Cork St. Patrick’s Day Parade will be a vibrant carnival of colours, music, marching bands, amazing floats and community groups with up to 3,000 participants taking part, including some visiting from the USA.

Commissions by local arts organisations Cork Community Art Link and Dowtcha Puppets, plus national groups such as Spraoi, Buí Bolg and LuxE are in progress, creating innovative floats celebrating the theme.

Along with the entertaining flock of Cork Gulls created by Dowtcha Puppets, who have been working for weeks with local performing groups and St John’s College, a huge puppet of St. Patrick will accompany them on the route.

Cork Community Art Link will present a series of very “Cork” buildings who will roam the streets of Cork. There will be six floats of various sizes, each telling its own story through puppetry, performance and pop-up characters. These floats are being produced in conjunction with 11 local groups including Enable Ireland, The Brook Centre, Farranree Springboard, National Learning Network and Cork City Firebirds.

National arts organisations joining the parade in Cork include Waterford performance art group Spraoi, which will celebrate the origins of the word “langer” by unleashing a ‘langur monkey’ onto the street of Cork, while theatre performers from LuxE will tell the story of Sunniva, the Cork princess who became the patron saint of Western Norway.

Joining Corkonians from the United States for the Parade will also be marching bands from Indiana, North Dakota, Colorado and New York.

The parade will begin at 1pm on St. Patrick’s Day. Full details of parking, park and ride bus facilities and traffic restrictions will be available on www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie in advance of parade day. See Facebook @corkstpatricksfestival and Twitter @corkpaddysfest for updates and details of other activities to enjoy over the weekend.

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