Community Investment

We help turn good ideas into great communities.

Many community groups and social enterprises in the Western Region have excellent ideas about how they can improve the socio-economic lives of their communities. The WDC’s Community Loan Fund was developed to give these groups access to the capital they need to help them turn those ideas in reality.

We support all kinds of projects. From job creation initiatives (including providing enterprise space) to health and wellbeing initiatives which improve the physical environment by providing social and recreational amenities or social care services.

Groups can borrow from €10,000 to €100,000 which are repaid by monthly direct debit over three to ten years (we will consider shorter terms and, in exceptional circumstances, longer terms if necessary). We charge a fixed 3% margin for the term of the loan with no arrangement fee. We don’t ask for personal guarantees and only in exceptional circumstances would we look for security on the funded asset.

The loans we provide are designed for new activity, not for re-financing of existing loans, bridging loans or for feasibility studies.

Bridging finance for LEADER

Community groups or social enterprises in the Western Region who have been approved for grant aid from LEADER can apply to the WDC Investment Fund for bridging finance.

The way it works is that to draw down LEADER grant aid the community group must first spend the money on the approved project and then they can draw down the grant against that spend. Naturally, some organisations simply don’t have that money to spend upfront and that’s where the WDC Investment Fund can help with a bridging loan. The community group can use the WDC bridging loan to make the initial expenditure and then repay the WDC bridging loan using the LEADER grant.

An interest rate of 1% per annum is charged to the loan on a monthly basis until the grant aid is approved. Then the LEADER company will pay the grant directly to the WDC and the bridging loan is repaid.

If you are a community group or social enterprise based in the Western Region and have been approved for grant aid through LEADER funding, you can apply to us for a bridging loan by downloading our application form.

Western Investment Fund Application Portal

If you wish to apply, you should, first of all, assess whether your project meets the criteria outlined above.

Then go to our online application portal below, where you can complete your application form and upload supporting documentation such as your business plan.

Apply here