Public Participation Network


  • Does your organisation use email / phone numbers to contact members?
  • Do you hold a database of contact details?
  • Do you use photographs for social media and promotional opportunities?
  • Do you work with children, older people or other vulnerable groups?

If the answer to any of these is YES, then you need to make sure your group is aware of GDPR, the new Data Protection legislation which into force on May 25th.  This strengthens the rights of individuals, and places some responsibilities on organisations.

Large or small, if your organisation stores, processes or collects personal data of any sort GDPR will affect you.  If you would like to explore how your organisation might be affected by GDPR, and how to practically prepare for the changes, Sligo PPN and Sligo Leader Partnership are offering a series of free workshops which will take you through the steps your group needs to take to ensure that you comply.

As well as giving a general insight into the impact of GDPR, each workshop will also respond to pre-submitted queries from groups and include a Q&A element to ensure that people leave the session knowing specific actions to take back to their group.  The most commonly asked questions at the workshops will also be compiled into an FAQ guide to be circulated to all groups registered with the PPN.

Phase 1 of the workshops will take place in the Northside Centre, Sligo.  (See below for dates)

Phase 2 will be scheduled for the Ballymote-Tobercurry MD (dates and times to be announced shorty)

To facilitate as many groups as possible to avail of this chance, please send only one nominee from each organisation who will be in a position to take back the information and inform change.  Registrations will be taken on a first come first served basis.

To register for Phase 1, please contact Antoinette at or 071 91 14430. Please identify which workshop (1-3) you are interested in and which organisation you represent.


Phase 1 – Venue: Northside Resource Centre, Forthill, Sligo

Workshop Schedule

Workshop 1 (Monday 28th May, 7-9pm)

An overview session aimed at informal community groups who may just use data in the form of email contact details, phone numbers and photographs. This will be delivered in non-technical and accessible language.

Topics Covered Include:  Why GDPR? How does GDPR affect Community and Voluntary Groups?  Examples of Personal Data, What is Consent?  Relevant Case Study, Dealing with Emails, Dealing with Photographs, Q&A session.


Workshop 2 (Thursday 31st May, 7-9pm)

To meet the needs of community and voluntary groups who may deal with special categories of data (e.g. groups who have data for children, older adults or people with mental/physical health issues).

Topics Covered Include:  Why GDPR? How does GDPR affect Community and Voluntary Groups?  Examples of Personal Data, What is Special Category Data?  What is Consent?  Appropriate Case Study, Dealing with Emails and photographs, Q&A session.


Workshop 3 (Thursday 7th June, 6-9pm)

A more intense workshop to meet the more advanced needs of groups that will need major changes to their data protection policies and governance structures.  Types of groups could include FRCs,  Sporting bodies, Community Co-Ops and Community/Enterprise Centres.

Topics Covered Include: Brief overview of GDPR, How does GDPR affect Community and Voluntary Groups?  Examples of Personal Data, What is Special Category Data? What is Consent?  Processing a SAR, Dealing with a Data Breach, Appropriate Case Study,  Governance & Documentation Requirements, Common Challenges, Mobile Devices and GDPR,  Sharing, Processing and Deletion of Personal Data, Q&A session.


Public Participation Network

In September 2013 the Government established the Working Group on Citizens Engagement in Local Government to make recommendations on more extensive and diverse input by citizens into the decision making at local government level. The Report of the Working Group, published on 28th February 2014, recommends the establishment of a number of new structures to facilitate community engagement in local decision-making.  In particular they propose the establishment of a ‘Public Participation Network (PPN) in each local authority area to enable the public take an active formal role in relevant policy making and oversight committees of the local authority.  Following the commencement of section 46 of Local Government Reform Act 2014 on 1st June, local authorities are required to establish PPNs immediately and all community representation on committees of the local authority must be sourced through the PPN. vRegulations on the new structures are due to be issued in December 2014.

Structure of the PPN

The PPN will be organised at both County and Municipal District level and will have a number of linkage groups on specific issues

The PPN will facilitate structured input by community and voluntary groups, social inclusion groups and environmental groups through representation on various local policy making committees such as the Local Community Development Committee, Strategic Policy Committee, Sligo Peace and Reconciliation Partnership and other policy making groups.

Activities to date

  • Development of a communications strategy with County Community Forum for establishment of PPN
  • The setting up of a website and the distribution of information leaflets and posters throughout the county promoting the PPN and encouraging community groups to register.
  • Completion of Online and paper based registration process.
  • Advertisement in local media, press releases, interviews on local radio, briefings to Council Chamber, Municipal Districts and LCDC and online promotion of PPN
  • The establishment a unit in City Hall to deal with queries on the PPN, contact 071 9114430, e-mail
  • Key workers/activists in the youth, volunteer, heritage, arts, environmental, social inclusion,  sports and community sectors have been briefed and asked to distribute information and encourage groups to join
  • Public information sessions in Easkey, Tubbercurry, Ballymote, Grange and Sligo City.