Lower Ormeau Residents Action Group
Shaftesbury Community & Recreation Centre
97 Balfour Avenue
Lower Ormeau Residents Action Group (LORAG) was established in 1987 to support the residents of Lower Ormeau and was initially tasked with addressing the many social problems in the area.
The organisation has grown substantially and is now recognised as one of the leading community development organisations in theSouth Belfast area.
Situated approximately half a mile from Belfast City Centre,Lower Ormeau is a compact inner city community consisting of approximately 786 houses. The tenure is an eclectic mixture of Housing Executive, privately owned and privately rented. The Lower Ormeau has recently seen the development of an additional 136 social houses by Clanmil Housing on the former North Cricket Grounds site with an additional 24 social houses and 24 apartments currently under construction. The area is defined by the boundaries of the River Lagan, Gasworks Site and the arterialOrmeau Road. In addition to the distinctive environmental problems suffered, poverty and severe deprivation have had an adverse impact on the regeneration and development of theLower Ormeauarea and surrounding areas.
Since 2000, LORAG has had responsibility for the day-to-day management and development of the Shaftesbury Community and Recreation Centre which is owned, maintained and leased by Belfast City Council. LORAG is implementing a social economy model in a range of projects to support the further development and financial stability of the Centre, staff and projects. This social economy model was further developed in 2010 with the completion of new health and sports facilities (£2.3 million) at Shaftesbury. LORAG has future plans to utilise the river to enhance service provision, with water sports and gateway tourism opportunities.
Over the past decade LORAG has strengthen their links with community organisations outside the area. We are a founding partner in the South Belfast Partnership Board and the Inner South Neighbourhood Partnership Board. LORAG have taken part in many cross community initiatives in the past and continue to drive attitudinal change in theSouth Belfastarea.
LORAG works closely with our neighbours and partners within theDonegal Passand Market communities and is a partner Cromac Regeneration Initiative, Gas Works Interface Network and the Inner South Local Area Network. At organisational level we are advocates of a new Northern Ireland Community and are trying to embed these principles in the new generation of people living in theLower Ormeau.
LORAG also have very strong relationships with many of the ethnic minority groupings in the city, such as the Roma Community Association, the Chinese Welfare Association, the Latin American Association, the Black Youth Network, the Belfast Islamic Society and many more.
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Type of OrganisationVCSE
- Gerard Rice