Muintir na Tíre is calling on Community Alert groups to reactivate and re-engage, following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Community Alert is a crime and community safety programme run by Muintir na Tíre, in partnership with An Garda Síochána. There are 1,000 groups registered across the country.

Muintir na Tíre highlights that community groups are the lifeblood of rural Ireland and are the best vehicle for ensuring community viability in areas which do not have many other supports.

Muintir na Tíre president, Jackie Meally, said: “Community Alert is one of the most proactive grass-roots programmes in the country.

"There is a group in nearly every rural parish, helping to keep the residents safe and secure in their homes.”

October has traditionally been Community Alert awareness month, and following a number of pilot events in its new Community Comeback programme, Muintir na Tíre is looking to build on the positive response received to encourage continued engagement over winter.

CEO Niall Garvey said: “Some groups remain as vibrant as ever, but others face challenges in re-engaging post-COVID.

"This year, we are encouraging groups to reconnect with their communities, their gardaí, and ourselves. For some, this might just involve holding a public meeting and assessing the new needs of the communities. For others, it might involve launching new initiatives. Details have been sent to all registered groups.”

Examples of activities carried out by Community Alert groups include Text Alert, Seniors Alert Scheme (socially monitored alarms), Personal Information Pack, and property recording, along with the Muintir mobile app, ‘Cairde’.

Muintir is currently rolling out its new Community Support Register, empowering communities to look after vulnerable persons in their own surroundings.