This time last year we were in the midst of a short (3 and a half weeks) and intense election campaign, which was ultimately unsuccessful following my elimination in the 4th Count with 1,928 votes. The Standards in Public Office Commission reimburse election expenses up to €8,700 for candidates who are elected or receive over one quarter of the quota in the constituency. The quota of 6,984 in Dublin South East meant I qualified for reimbursement.
Other candidates in Dublin South East who were entitled to reimbursement were: Eoghan Murphy (FG), Lucinda Creighton (FG), Ruairi Quinn (Lab), Kevin Humphreys (Lab), Chris Andrews (FF), Paul Sommerville (Ind) and John Gormley (GP).
Having received a reimbursement of €8,700 to the campaign bank account, and with a surplus remaining from donations made to the campaign, I have decided to donate €10,000 of this money to 10 different charities and causes that carry out important work within the scope of my four campaign policy areas.
These charities and causes have been suggested and selected collectively by eight of the full time campaign team and myself on behalf of all who worked on and contributed to the campaign. None of these people were paid and so these donations are as much from them as from me.
Thanks, once again, to all of the 450 people who donated to the campaign, there wouldn’t have been any expenditure to have reimbursed without your contributions.
The charities chosen are:
Policy Area: Section One – Restoring Faith in our Political System
1. TheStory.ie - €1,000
The Story is a website run by Gavin Sheridan and dedicated to sharing documents, combing and combining data and promoting transparency in public life. It does this through requests under the Freedom of Information Act. It is an experiment in journalism and crowdsourcing hoping to shed light on the government and anyone who spends the Irish taxpayers’ money. Contribute to the discussion on how best to use this donation over on thestory.ie
TheStory.ie is always pleased to receive help in any form, including financial support. For more than eight years Ireland has lived with an odd FOI system where the people pay twice for their own information – citizens hand over money to get information they’ve already paid for. As long as this charging system remains in place, the only solution is to pool resources and obtain information tactically. Donations help greatly in this regard.
-Gavin Sheridan, thestory.ie
Policy Area: Section Two – Putting Society First
Educate Together is an established school patron body with a thirty year track record of excellence in Irish Education. Formally recognised as a second level patron by the Department of Education and Skills, Educate Together has applied to open its first second-level schools. Educate Together schools are committed to the values laid down in Educate Together’s Charter; that is Educate Together schools are learner centred, multi denominational, co-educational and they are democratically run. The Educate Together approach will move second-level education away from ‘teaching to the test’ towards a greater focus on the learner. To this end, Educate Together is working to adapt its unique ‘Learn Together’ Curriculum for second level. This donation will be used by Educate Together on curriculum development in the coming year, so that active, engaging teaching methods can be used throughout the curriculum, encouraging teachers in Educate Together second-level schools to place a strong emphasis on developing skills in creative and critical thinking, communication, teamwork, research and leadership – skills for the 21st century. For more information go to Educate Together Secondary Schools Campaign.
Dylan is an advocate for change in Irish Society and has been a committed supporter of Educate Together’s campaign for change in Irish Education. Now that Educate Together is a recognised patron at second-level, this kind of financial support is critical to making the dream of Irish parents a reality. This contribution will have significant and immediate impact, and we are delighted to have his ongoing support.
-Mary O’ Donovan, Educate Together
3. Headstrong – €1,000
Headstrong is The National Centre for Youth Mental Health – a non-profit organisation supporting young people’s mental health in Ireland.
We really appreciate Dylan’s support of our work. His commitment, as one of last years youngest candidates and someone who worked so hard to empower young people to have a voice, is something we in Headstrong believe to be critical because young people’s voices need to be heard and used to inform policy and politics.
-Orlaith Foley, Headstrong
4. Cluain Mhuire – €1,000
The Cluain Mhuire Service is a community based adult mental health service serving a population of over 175,000 in the Dublin South East area. The service seeks to accomplish its mission by providing the following services: Acute care and Treatment; in patient service, Outpatient Clinics; Rehabilitation and vocational training; Residential Rehabilitation Service; Liaison Psychiatry Service; Social (drop-in) centres and membership club; Home based interventions and a variety of targeted therapies. Cluain Mhuire is the lead agency in the national pilot providing an early intervention service for psychosis in the East Coast Section of HSE Mid Leinster.
Sincere thanks for the very kind donation of € 1,000 to the local Community Mental Health Service for South East Co Dublin. Here at The St John of God Cluain Mhuire Service, we will use the funds to greatest effect and upgrade our Club facilities in the heart of Dun Laoghaire. This will have a knock on effect for 92 people, who all live locally with enduring mental health difficulties & will have their club transformed by your generosity. Once again many thanks for the interest & practical assistance towards your local mental health service. It’s very much appreciated !
-Shane Hill, Director of Nursing, Cluain Mhuire Community Mental Health Service
5. Outhouse – €500
Outhouse is a community and resource centre for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) people and their families. It is based in a community-owned and restored Georgian building in the heart of Dublin City. The primary goal of Outhouse is to provide a safe space where people can: get information and support, meet like-minded others in a relaxed environment, attend events and meetings. It provides a series of integrated services and supports to LGBT people and their families from Dublin and around Ireland. Established in 1996 when there was a complete lack of LGBT-focused community services, we acquired and restored our current space which is held in trust for the LGBT community. Our team of committed staff and volunteers have built up significant expertise and our resource centre is often the first point of contact for the LGBT community. Currently over 25,000 people use Outhouse every year.
The monies will go towards improvements to our entrance hallway. In particular we will be completing work to the rear floor area. This will enhance the appearance and the safety of this area which has not been completed to date. This will complement the already restored front floor area (restored with the aid of Dublin City Council grant 2010). In addition we will box up exposed cabling in the entrance hall and erect signage and notice boards.
-Martha Whyte, Manager, Outhouse
6. Marriage Equality – €500
Currently approximately 6 -10% of the Irish population has no freedom to marry and therefore have no access to all the ordinary rights that are afforded to married couples. Marriage Equality is a campaign working to change that. This donation will go towards projects which help to raise awareness of the need to keep pushing for marriage equality in Ireland, projects such as ‘out to your TD’ campaign, which supports and enables people to become marriage equality advocates themselves.
We are really grateful to Dylan for his generous support and investment in the campaign for equality for same sex couples, our families and our children. As well as using his general election campaign last year to raise awareness about the continued urgent need for marriage equality, he is now also investing in this year’s work. Dylan’s financial support will fund Marriage Equality’s ‘Out to your TD’ campaign – a grassroots lobbying project which enables people to become marriage equality advocates themselves.
-Moninne Griffith, Director, Marriage Equality
Policy Area: Section Three – Reinvigorating the City
7. Dublintellectual ‘City Intersections forum’- €1,000
Dublintellectual is an exciting Arts & Humanities project. It began in 2011 and is all about creating a bridge between the university and the city.
The City Intersections forum, launching in March 2012, will work to provide an all-inclusive arena for discussion of the problems and opportunities facing Dublin today. The series will provide a platform for a collaborative intervention in current debates about the city’s future, by creating a space for academics, practitioners, politicians, creative enterprises, and the general public to meet and work together, fostering ties and nurturing innovation. Events will focus around the materiality of the city – a particular cityscape, a totemic object, a significant building – and launch discussions on critical urban issues and the wider role of Humanities in Irish urban society.
8. Young Social Innovators ‘Speak Out Fora’ – €1,000
Young Social Innovators (YSI) believes that young people are a powerful and largely untapped force for change in their local communities and in wider society. Promoting and leading the way in education for social innovation in Ireland, Young Social Innovators encourages, motivates and creates new opportunities for young people to actively participate in the world around them.
Young Social Innovators is delighted to receive this generous donation from Dylan Haskin’s campaign fund which will contribute to the running of our provincial Speak Out Fora in March 2012. These events will give over 5,000 young people throughout Ireland the opportunity to voice their concerns about some of the most pressing social issues affecting them and their communities and a platform from which to communicate the actions they are taking to address these social needs. Young Social Innovators, like many organizations in the charitable sector in Ireland, is facing huge challenges in the current climate. This contribution comes at a timely point in our annual calendar and we are extremely grateful to Dylan for his support of these events which are important for the young participants of our social innovation programme and for the youth voice of Ireland to be heard.
-Bronagh O’ Hagan, Young Social Innovators
9. Dublin Youth Theatre – €1000
Since its foundation in 1977, by Paddy O’ Dwyer, Dublin Youth Theatre has forged a unique contribution to the worlds of theatre and youth work. Thirty Five years old this year, DYT continues to provide exciting opportunities for young people in the 14 – 22 age group to gain experience in drama, theatre and the related arts. There are currently over 100 members with 100 more auditioning for just 35 places each year. DYT seeks to offer as many young people from greater Dublin as possible the chance to learn social skills through theatre regardless of experience, background, nationality, race, religion or socio-economic status.
Our resources are limited and our 200 year old house in the centre of Dublin 1 is bursting at the seams. The donation from your campaign fund will allow us to carry out essential upgrades to our studio and go some way to ensuring we stay open for the young people of Dublin for the foreseeable future.
-Ella Daly, Dublin Youth Theatre
Policy Area: Section Four – Restructuring for a Reliable Economy
10. FLAC (Free Legal Advice Centres) €1,500
FLAC exists to promote equal access to justice for all, so that the protection and benefits of the law are accessible to all people, regardless of income or background. Concentrating on access to justice, FLAC champions the public interest and human rights of those who lack equality and a voice. We do this through the promotion of legal information and advice, public interest litigation, focus on the defence of the civil legal aid system and reform of social welfare law, debt law and consumer credit law.
In the area of debt and consumer credit law, FLAC campaigns for consistent and fair standards for consumer lending and borrowing and for a fair and effective legal system and infrastructure in relation to debt and debt enforcement. FLAC advocates for greater fairness, consistency and transparency in the administration of the social welfare system. And in relation to civil legal aid, FLAC’s goal is that the right to state-funded legal aid is better realised for those who need it to access justice.
Total amount of donations: €10,000