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BURC’s CONCENSUS Initiative was launched in 2009 to support the translation of project aims and objectives into real world activities, engaging the participation of local people from communities where the need is greatest, with locally defined sustainbility issues. CONCENSUS goes from strength to strength and the broad range of activity described below is an indication of the scope it provides for engagement and participation.

In the past year the CONCENSUS Initiative has worked with the Royal Artillery Association along with Active Retirement Ireland, the Parents Support Group from the Youth Justice Agency, Young People from the Youth Justice Agency, Teach na Failte with Lower Castlereach Community Group, the UDR Association in Coleraine, The Hubb, Fab Femmes Women’s Support Network for women on probation, young people from Drumarg and Mullacreevie in Armagh, Palestinian Aid and the ‘Here to Help’ womens group in Tigers Bay,  through the CAFE programme.  CAFE (Citizenship and Fellowship Education) is supported by the EU’s PEACE III Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body.

Concensus has further worked with youth groups from the following organisations and centres.  Moville Family Resource Centre, Buncrana Youth Centre, the Doorway Project in Letterkenny, Portaferry Community collective, Ramelton Summer School, a group from Rosemount, Hear 2 Help women’s group from lower North Belfast and young people from Abhaile Aris in Letterkenny a part of the COISTE network with the Hubb in North Belfast as a part of the EPIC network.  There have been productions hosted by North Leitrim Womens group in Manorhamilton, Stagewrite in Strabane and through the North West Drama Festival.  We have further hosted a trip to Derry/Londonderry with North Down Community assistance, a group linked with the EPIC network, with the Lithuanian Association in Comber.  We have also worked with an intercultural Group in Letterkenny where migrant workers and the LGBT community have worked together on a project.  All these groups have been a part of our DISC programme.  DISC (Development for Inclusivity and Sustainable Communities) is supported by the EU’s PEACE III Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body.

A grant from the Community Relations Council enabled the CONCENSUS Initiative to support the publication and launch of ‘The New Workers’.  The activity included participants from Lithuania, Nigeria, Brazil, Poland, Liberia, Romania, Spain, Cameroon, Philippines, Ghana and Holland.  The launch event had a wide diversity of individuals participating, including cross border migrants as well as members of the indigenous community in Northern Ireland.

Research on the effects of the border on the mobility of migrant workers, supported by EURES, has been an extremely informative piece of work.  This activity has produced significant findings about the barriers to labour mobility and social integration that migrants face.  Full findings and shall be published later in 2011.

The CONCENSUS Initiative has also worked alongside Newtownabbey Community Focus delivering a 50 week programme on shared history.  This group of 30 were engaged in a broad range of topics from the earliest Irish history to modern day migrant workers.

Groups working with the CONCENSUS Initiative are facilitated through a learner-led participation based programme.  The programmes enable participants to decide what they want to learn about and how to use it.

The aim of each programme is to develop community sustainability.  Creating a project work outcome as a resource for the group to use supports this process.  This outcome can take the form of a video , funding application, a mission statement, a plan for the group, a study visit, a publication, an exhibition, a project plan, an event or it might even take the form of a funding proposal for something more ambitious.  Or, it could be something else again.

Through addressing these issues, this significant development has been achieved in developing a more inclusive society in Northern Ireland and the border counties and progress has been made on challenging sectarianism. 


Cross community cross border study visit to Palestine & Israel

A recent study visit to Palestine and Israel by a cross community and cross border group with BURC gave participants an opportunity to view, from a very different and yet somehow similar cultural perspective, the impact of trauma on families and communities in a conflict society.  Twenty three people, made up of BURC staff and volunteers, community activists involved in local cross community development work, workers from agencies such as The Youth Justice Agency, Belfast City Council, and The174 Trust, as well as participants from Co Donegal, set off from Belfast mid-September to Bethlehe



On 29th May BURC organised Event Connect to support individuals who are interested in placements in the arts industry this summer.  With organisers from Ramelton to Enniskillen via Strabane, this was a great opportunity for arts students, those interested in event management to develop employable skills for the arts and events sector.


Celebration of Nelson Mandela


A South African group made up of four different tripe’s and proveniences residing in Letterkenny and who have links & contacts in Dublin and Northern Ireland are currently participating in a Historical Peace Project. The group  have a common interest in the Life  and journey of Nelson Mandela and the legacy of Peace & Reconciliation that continues for the South African people.

Grounds for PEACE III


The Belfast Unemployed Resource Centre is pleased to announce the launch of the DISC II programme and with it the capacity to engage local communities in peace and reconciliation through sport, DVD media, drama, local and world history, lobbying, committee work, health and nutrition, volunteering, youth work, public art, citizenship and many other community based activities. This programme has been supported by the EU’s PEACE III Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body.

Voices for Change

BURC DISC 11 are currently working with a group of Women from Leitrim to form a community choir ‘Voices for Change’ that will be a forum for women to work together, to identify and then raise awareness of issues through the power of song.

The community choir is a sustainable project, by performing at the different seminars and events for local events and projects across the North West and Cross Border. 

A Walk in My Footsteps


The Walk in My Foots Steps has encompassed working with young people from a cross border, cross community background.  Groups from cross community in Derry/ Londonderry and Inishown were supported  in working  and developing a piece of art in conjunction with Altnagelvin Hospital to install a piece of art which they feel  is representative of them and the communities that they live in. 


Lithuanian Teams start another season in Basketball League

The Lithuanian Association is celebrating the 3rd year of having teams in the league this year.  This is a significant forum for players to integrate and socialise within local society and culture.

StageWrite 2012

The StageWrite program was very successful in 2012, creating the large amount of interest from cross community schools throughout the Strabane District becoming involved in creative writing of stories that would be develop into a stage production, the students from the north West College further developing their skills in communication and directing performances




Stakeholders from the CONCENSUS Initiative of the Belfast Unemployed Resource Centre came together to consider the use of biographies to celebrate the lives of individuals, warts and all, who were a part of events one hundred years ago.  This programme has been supported by the EU’s PEACE III Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body. 


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