With only four women currently elected to Donegal County Council out of 37 councillors, Women for Election aims to attract more women to enter local politics for the 2024 elections.

Nationally, women make up only 26% of Councillors and in Donegal it stands at an even lower 11%.

‘We know that women are so involved across community groups and leadership roles in Donegal yet the number of women involved at decision making tables doesn’t reflect that,” said Caitríona Gleeson, CEO of Women for Election.

The group has launched a calendar of Autumn and Winter Training and Events, both online and in person, which are taking place in various counties across Ireland.

Ms Gleeson said: “While May 2024 may seem far away for many of us, for anyone considering running for Local Elections, now is the time to get involved. Our trainings are aimed for every woman, whether they want to find out more about politics, support a woman to run, explore what it means to run, or re-run for election, we have something for everybody.”

The trainings include Introduction to Politics which informs participants about the structures of politics, the INSPIRE Campaign School which covers confidence, communications and campaigning and the EQUIP Campaign Programme which is an intensive training for women who are getting ready to run for election or manage another women’s campaign, along with many other workshops and events. The trainings are bespoke to help address some of the barriers to women accessing politics and delivered by highly experienced trainers including Orlaith Carmody, Margaret E Ward, Pat Montague and Dermot Ryan.

Most trainings are offered for free and for any training with a cost attached, there are bursaries and concessionary rates available as Women for Election don’t want cost to be a barrier to accessing these trainings.

The calendar is available at womenforelection.ie/training-programmes