The heart of the community
Circle Voluntary Housing Association tenant Pamela Conway is pictured at the reopening of the refurbished Deerpark Community Centre in Tallaght, following significant investment.

The heart of the community

DEERPARK this week celebrated the opening of its refurbished community centre, the “first stepping-stone” in a series of planned upgrades for the estate.

The €35,000 upgrade was jointly funded by Circle Voluntary Housing Association (VHA) and South Dublin County Council, and in partnership with Foróige.

According to information provided, the upgrade ‘looked beyond bricks and mortar and into the rich and diverse heart of the Deerpark community’, with the partners involved working together to adapt to the needs of those living in the area.

Nestled in between a number of estates, Deerpark has for some time been calling for a fit-for-purpose community centre, a space to connect the area, and the young people living there.

John Hannigan, CEO, Circle VHA, said: “The community centre at Deerpark wasn’t being utilised to its potential and it needed significant investment to upgrade its facilitates and amenities and to deliver a space that is welcoming for the whole community.

“The upgraded centre now plays host to a communal space that can be used to host projects, groups and activities, alongside offices for our team at Circle VHA and Foróige to have a base in the community where we can better integrate with residents.

“The re-opening of the community centre is the first stepping stone as a focal point for our planned upgrades to Deerpark and our investment cements our commitment to delivering ‘More than Housing’ to Circle VHA residents.”

Mayor Peter Kavanagh cutting the ribbon at the reopening of the refurbished Deerpark Community Centre in Tallaght, with Foróige Area Manager Andy Leeson and Circle Voluntary Housing Association CEO John Hannigan
Photos by Andres Poveda

Circle VHA believes that the completion of the refurbished centre is evidence of its ‘commitment and willingness to evolve’ so that the changing needs of Circle tenants, their families and the wider community are met.

On Tuesday, November 16, John Hannigan joined County Mayor Peter Kavanagh, representatives from Foróige, and the council to cut the ribbon on the upgraded centre, officially opening it to the community.

Ciaran Crowe, Estate Management Officer with South Dublin County Council, said: “South Dublin County Council work in partnership with Circle Housing to improve the physical and social environment for the residents of Deerpark estate.

Garda Gary Duffy at the opening of Deerpark refurbished centre on Monday

“With the co-funded refurbishment of the community centre we believe this will enable improved communication between residents and the service providers as well as providing a more efficient and speedy response to issues raised.

“We look forward to the establishment of this new facility and working with Circle and Foróige into the future for the benefit of the whole community.”

Andy Leeson, Area Manager of Foróige welcomed the official opening of Deerpark Community Centre, which he believes provides a “welcoming, accessible space” for youth activities and for young people from the Deerpark, Kiltipper and Killinarden areas.

“The renovation and relaunch of this space is the result of an excellent partnership between Foróige, Circle Housing and South Dublin County Council and offers residents in the area a superb community resource,” he said.