School, small business and community groups express delight at receiving cash injection to invest in new technologies

1st August 2023: A primary school, small business and three community groups in county Kilkenny have received a quick cash injection to invest in new technology thanks to the RISE Community Fund supported by National Broadband Ireland (NBI) and Granahan McCourt.

Established by Granahan McCourt and NBI Chairman, David McCourt, RISE is providing monthly grants across the country for rural community organisations seeking to boost their digital ecosystems.

Receiving the grants of €1000 each were KBK Community Enterprise Group, who voluntarily run the Ballykeeffe Amphitheatre and have plans to install fibre broadband to increase its digital capabilities; Keep Her Lit, a Folk and Traditional Music Festival in Inistioge with plans to invest in new camera equipment; Urlingford Town Team CLG, a recently established team of volunteers working with local authorities to tackle community-based challenges and spark regeneration; St. Patrick’s NS, a primary school in Clough which is investing in new laptop equipment to enhance its digital offering; and T/A History-Mystery, a small tourism business near Graig-na-Managh which is investing in its website and app offering.

Pictured: Orla O’Malley, Programme Director, RISE Community Fund, Victor Branagan, History-Mystery, Dympna Hayes, Urlingford Town Team CLG, Margaret Keane, St. Patrick’s NS Clogh, Teddy Marnell, Ballykeeffe Amphitheatre and Niall Beirne, Head of Internal Communications & Strategic Partnerships, National Broadband Ireland.

David McCourt, founder of RISE and Chairman of Granahan McCourt and NBI, commented: “When we launched the RISE Community Fund, we were looking for community groups, charities, small businesses and social enterprises in rural areas who were exploring how technology could scale the impact of their work. I’m delighted to say that since opening applications in County Kilkenny, the response has been incredible and now we’re excited to be awarding grants to our successful applicants. Each one of them is an inspiration, with many volunteering their time and committing a huge amount of energy and passion to bring pride of place to their local community.”

The RISE Community Fund supported by NBI and Granahan McCourt calls on small businesses, charities, community groups and social enterprises to use technology in creative and entrepreneurial ways to deliver maximum impact.

Teddy Marnell, a volunteer for the KBK Community Enterprise Group, commented: “Installing high-speed broadband into our community amphitheatre will help us dramatically from scanning tickets to improving the efficiency of our sales process. This grant from RISE will be a massive help which the whole community can benefit from.”

Peter Hendrick, CEO of NBI, added: “At NBI, we’re on a mission to connect over 1.1 million people in rural Ireland who don’t have access to high-speed broadband to a world-class, superfast network. Whilst connectivity is a vital utility and a critical first step, it alone can’t solve all of the challenges for businesses, community groups and social enterprises trying to expand the positive impact they’re able to have – both to the local community, and to the wider economy. That’s why we’re incredibly excited to engage local communities with the RISE Community Fund and celebrate innovative uses of technology in Kilkenny.”

NBI is reminding Kilkenny residents to also visit their website at to check whether their home, farm or business is included in the National Broadband Plan and to sign up for Eircode specific updates on the rollout.


Related News