Intercultural Ambassador Programme Launch in Dublin’s North East Inner City

Dublin City Council and the North East Inner City Initiative today, Friday 28th May, launched the NEIC Intercultural Ambassadors Programme, which seeks to highlight cultural integration and celebrate diversity in this part of Dublin City. The first project of this kind in Ireland, the Intercultural Ambassadors Programme was launched today by Lord Mayor Hazel Chu, with anyone living or significantly engaged in the North East Inner City area welcomed to apply.

The North Inner City is one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse places in the country as well as being a hub for business, education, religious and leisure activities that attract migrants on a daily basis.

Integration is a two-way process, and is dependent on migrant and non-migrant members of society working together alongside statutory and community organisations to promote integration. This programme aims to create a diverse network of intercultural ambassadors and encourage active involvement by local people in promoting intercultural dialogue and addressing the barriers to integration in the North East Inner City.

Serving in a voluntary capacity over the next year are sixteen intercultural ambassadors representing twelve countries, 4 continents and speaking a total of 21 languages.

Lord Mayor Hazel Chu said, “Over 40% of the population in the Dublin’s North East Inner City area is made up of people who were not born in Ireland, making this the most culturally diverse part of the country.  The launch of the Intercultural Ambassador Programme is a positive and practical recognition of the diversity that exists in this part of the City.  It is a great example of how we, as a society, can support cultural dialogue and promote social integration of migrant groups living in the North East Inner City and create a sense of belonging for all.”

Joy Eniola, Intercultural Development Coordinator at NEIC stated, “This programme is about bringing together everyday members of the community from diverse walks of life to learn from each other and become active participants in addressing the issues that concern them. The ambassadors are keen to utilise the potential of parks and public places in social and sporting activities that bring people together; enhancing the local environment, encouraging cultural expression through music and other art forms; and engaging in specific actions to address some of the unique challenges that local migrants face such as lack of access to information and resources. Both myself and the group of Intercultural Ambassadors are keen to engage with all minority ethnic groups in the North East Inner City, and would welcome any opportunities to do so over the next year.”

Mary Lynch, Dublin City Council’s Integration Officer, stated, “It’s a wonderful occasion to acknowledge the rich diversity of community within the North East Inner City. This is an innovative and aspirational project and complements Dublin City Council’s ongoing engagement work on our forthcoming integration and intercultural strategy, which has been developed under the auspices of our Local Community Development Committee. In collaboration with our cultural ambassadors and the local community, we would like to encourage greater understanding to create constructive intercultural dialogue and outcomes for all”

The development of Dublin City Council’s new integration and intercultural strategy to 2025 is a priority initiative of Lord Mayor Hazel Chu focussed on celebrating, supporting and protecting the cultural, ethnic, linguistic and religious diversity among all who live in, work in and visit the city while ensuring that active steps are taken to eliminate discrimination and racism.  A Framework Plan for developing the new integration and intercultural strategy will be proposed by Lord Mayor Chu for agreement and adoption by Dublin’s Local and Community Development Committee in June 2021.