Rural Social Scheme

 1. Rural Social Scheme (RSS):

The Rural Social Scheme was initiated in 2003 by the Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government. The aims of the RSS are to provide income support for farmers and fishermen in receipt of long-term social welfare payments and to provide services of benefit to rural communities. Responsibility for the operation of the RSS currently lies with the Department of Social Protection and the implementation is managed locally by Mayo North East LEADER Partnership with the RSS participants being employees of the company.

Currently, 220 individuals participate in the Rural Social Scheme in Mayo North East; supported by an RSS Co-ordinator and 11 Supervisors.  Their services are provided to over 200 community and voluntary groups across the Mayo North East area.

The range of services provided include:

  • Maintaining and enhancing various walking routes (i.e. way marked ways, agreed walks) and bog roads.
  • Energy conservation work for older people and those at risk of poverty.
  • Village and countryside enhancement projects eg Tidy Towns.
  • Social care and care of older people, community care for both pre-school and after-school groups, home visitations services and meals on wheels
  • Environmental maintenance work – maintenance and care-taking of community and sporting facilities.
  • Community facilities countywide are supported such as projects relating to not-for-profit cultural and heritage centres.
  • Clerical Duties and administration for the community and
  • Any other appropriate community project identified during the course of the Scheme.

For Hours of Work, Rules, Criteria and Rates for RSS view here

Given the level of demand from community groups for the RSS Services, the Board of Mayo North East has set priorities, as it wishes to be as fair and equitable in its support for groups across the North and East Mayo area. The priorities set are services for older people, community childcare and social care (including meals on wheels), support to community groups involved in providing general services in their local areas and we work alongside other voluntary and statutory organisations in providing backup support.