Sports clubs, dance classes and children's activity centres are amongst a number of facilities under threat if insurance costs continue to spiral as a result of fraudulent claims. Premiums have increased from €2,500 to €16,500 in just five years forcing small businesses to close and leaving the rest with uncertain futures.
Rhonda Balfe Hoban who runs the Navan Shotokan Karate Club says she worries for the future of small businesses that offer much-needed resources in the community.
"The hike of insurance over the last few years has been ridiculous, especially for any small business with activities that could have small claims. I teach martial arts and it's my passion. I do it to teach young people new skills and to give back to the community so it's really disappointing that we are faced with this.
Rhonda says that without the help of The Irish Martial Arts Commission working with its members to access affordable insurance under one umbrella, she would not be in business today.
"The Irish Martial Arts Commission assist its members in sourcing policies that suit and cover us as a whole. That was a lifeline to me. Without the smaller groups joining forces and the organisation acting on our behalf to get a better deal, we would have been finished before we even started.
If you are a small business starting out, there's no way you could afford the insurance on an individual basis unless you get some kind of funding. There will come a time when our young people have nowhere to go to socialise and learn these disciplines and skills that have the potential to shape their lives."