Facebook announced that it is launching a Community Action Grants programme in Meath, where its Clonee Data Centre is located, to support community projects related to culture or technology. The Community Action Grants programme is implemented in every community in which Facebook has developed a data centre and this is the first year the company will be inviting grant applications for projects in Meath.
The scheme announced today will be inviting applications that address community needs by putting the power of technology to use for community benefit, improving local STEM education or connecting people on or offline. The application process will open in October and further details on the criteria and how to apply can be found on the Clonee Data Center Facebook Page.
Facebook’s Clonee Data Centre, which became operational in December 2017, is part of the highly-advanced infrastructure that helps bring Facebook apps and services to over 2.5 billion people every day. Construction on the data centre began in April 2016 and, at times, it was the largest construction project in Ireland with a peak of 1,550 people working on site construction. Today, there are 300 people working on site supporting day-to-day operations at the data centre.
The Clonee Data Centre is supported by 100% renewable wind energy and is one of the most advanced and energy-efficient data centres in the world. Facebook worked with Brookfield Renewables to tap into their wind energy assets in Ireland, to not only power the data centre but also the international headquarters in Dublin. Facebook recently announced that by 2020, the company’s global operations will be supported by 100% clean and renewable energy.
Commenting on the Community Action Grants program, Clonee Data Centre Site Manager, Mark Hunter said: “We’re delighted to be announcing our Community Action Grants program, and we are committed to playing a positive role and investing in the long-term vitality of the local community here in Clonee and further afield. To date, we've donated more than €2.5 million to community projects across all our regions which have included investments in tablets for programming classes to increase the students understanding of technology, contributed to family friendly events, games, concerts and community celebrations for our local communities. We’re very excited to welcome applications from local community groups in Meath over the coming months.”
In addition to the Clonee Data Centre, Ireland is also home to Facebook’s international headquarters with over 3,000 people working across 60 teams including safety and integrity, infrastructure engineering, sales, and more. In October 2016, Facebook opened a Facebook Reality Labs office in Cork city, bringing dozens of high-quality jobs to the area.
Facebook Ireland has been supporting community projects for many years and contributes significant funds and support to local communities in Dublin through a number fundraising activities and education initiatives. Last year, Facebook raised over €150, 000 for Irish charities across a range of issues including homelessness, mental health, healthcare for children and education for disadvantaged groups. It also work closely with The Early Learning Initiative (ELI), at the National College of Ireland, on a ‘Mentoring Programme’ for primary school students in the local area. Since beginning the Mentoring Programme, hundreds of Facebook employees have helped over 320 students from local schools in the development of important skills required in education and work environments.
Further information on the Community Action Grants Programme can be found on the Clonee Data Centre Facebook Page