What is PPN?

The purpose of the Public Participation Network is to bring together community & voluntary, social inclusion and environmental groups in an independent structure. Through the PPN, these groups have opportunities for networking, communication and sharing of information which leads to participation in local decision making and collective action.

Members will be better informed about Carlow County Councils services, activities and funding.

  • Facilitate the representation and participation of our members on boards/committees and decision making bodies
  • Provide a mechanism for Carlow County Council to consult with the public on new plans/strategies, policies, services and other community groups
  • Strengthen the capacity of groups/organisations to contribute positively to their local community and the wider area
  • Elect representatives to Carlow County Council policy-making committees and influence what happens at these committees
  • Receive information on funding, grant and new initiatives which may be of interest to your group/community
  • Share information and ideas with like-minded groups
  • Avail of free and low cost support and training

Establishment of the PPN

Why PPN’s were set up?

The Working Group on Citizen Engagement was set up by the Government in September 2013 under the Chairmanship of Fr. Sean Healy. The role of this Group was to make recommendations to ensure more extensive and diverse input by citizens into local government decision making. The Group proposed that a “Public Participation Network” be established in each local authority area to enable the public to take an active formal role in relevant policy making and committees of the Local Authority.

In 2014, in response to these recommendations, Public Participation Networks were set up in local authority areas in Ireland under Section 46 of the Local Government Reform Act 2014. The aim of this was to provide a “framework for public participation in local government, …by which citizens and communities will be encourage and supported to participate in the decision-making process of the local authority.”

In early 2014 Carlow County Council’s Community Section was charged with commencing the process of setting up Carlow PPN. The Community Section commenced this process by holding a series of public information meetings: –

  • Muinebheag – 30th June
  • Hacketstown – 1st September
  • Borris – 2nd September
  • Tullow – 4th September
  • Drummond – 8th September
  • Ballon – 9th September
  • Carlow – 17th September
  • Muinebheag – 18th September

On 2nd October 2014 Carlow PPN held its first County Plenary and Municipal District Meeting where the Secretariat were elected.

Carlow PPN has two Municipal Districts – Carlow and Muinebheag.

Carlow PPN is a non-party political and non-sectarian representative organisation that acts as a voice for all community and voluntary organisations in County Carlow.

Linkage Groups

Linkage Groups bring together PPN members who have a particular interest in a certain area. They are sub-groups which connect the PPN with Carlow County Council and other Advisory/Decision Making Boards in the County of Carlow.


Linkage Groups enable PPN members to participate in shaping Council decisions that affect them.

Linkage Groups are developed when a specialist committee/board seeks community and voluntary representation on their structure. The PPN will then notify its members and convene a meeting of interested parties. This meeting then forms the Linkage Group which will then nominate a representative to sit on the committee/board. The representative will maintain contact with the Linkage Group to ensure two-way communication between the PPN and that committee/board. The Linkage Group will also support the representative.