The Aims of FACE

The Family and Community Engagement Project (FACE) project address issues of separation, exclusion and difference through a programme of engagement, integration, social inclusion and building positive relations at a local level between British Services family members and their local, neighbouring communities. The project uses an interactive, inter-generational and experiential approach of area-based engagement and managed contact. Building on three pilot programmes, the project is now operational in four locations across Northern Ireland: Lisburn, Holywood, Ballykinlar and Aldergrove.

The current project is sponsored and supported by the European Union’s PEACE III Programme and will run for two and a half years. Co-operation Ireland works in partnership with the Army Welfare Services (AWS) to develop and build relationships within local communities in Northern Ireland and those from the Services families stationed here. In 2012, we also received a message of support from Prime Minister David Cameron to further develop this area of work.

The overall aim of the FACE programme is to reconcile the services’ families based in locations throughout Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland with the neighbouring communities and traditions within Ireland. Services’ families are excluded and marginalised from economic, social and civil networks as a result of problems stemming from fears for personal security, sectarianism and lack of contact with local communities. There is also a considerable degree of misunderstanding of the role of those based here, which is linked to the legacy of the Troubles. Many families living on the four bases here are from ethnic minority communities and are thus further marginalised by negative attitudes towards their ethnicity. Since the programme began in October 2012, confidence, trust, and meaningful connections have been formed between groups of women from the four bases and their surrounding communities.


We are delighted to invite you to our FACE Conference:Integrating our Hidden Communities.  This event will celebrate the FACE project and also explore our hidden communities.

29th and 30th September at Titanic Belfast

Speakers include QUB Professor Rhiannon Turner, acclaimed Author Anne Cadwallader and Dr Kathleen Kuehnast, Director, Gender and Peacebuilding Centre at USIP.

For more information or to reserve your free place please contact Laura on 028 9089 1016 or email ljohnston@cooperationireland.org