Barnardos defends Danone deal

Barnardos defends Danone deal

Barnardos has defended its choice of sponsor for its Big Toddle event after a group of high-level academics wrote a letter to the charity expressing concerns.

Danone is the sponsor of the Big Toddle for Barnardos, a half-mile sponsored walk for children under five, with the funds raised ploughed back into the charity’s early years work.

The group of academics and child experts claimed in the letter that the involvement of a breast-milk substitute manufacturer breached the WHO code of marketing of breast-milk substitutes.

The letter was issued by Malvina Walsh, chairwoman of the Baby Feeding Law Group Ireland, and co-signatories included Claire Allcutt, vice-chairwoman of the Baby Feeding Law Group Ireland, Helen Cawley, director of the First Steps Nutrition Trust, Marita Hennessy of the Health Behaviour Change Research Group in the School of Psychology at NUI Galway, and Margaret Murphy, lecturer in midwifery at University College Cork.

According to that letter:

“This sponsorship arrangement with Danone is at odds with the underlying ethos of Barnardos.”

In response to that letter the CEO of Barnardos, Suzanne Connolly, said the charity needs to fundraise and as part of that sought corporate sponsorships, with all funds raised by the public going directly to support its services to help vulnerable children.

“We carry out an ethical evaluation with all corporate supporters to ascertain whether a relationship is appropriate or not. Barnardos has partnered with Danone on the Big Toddle for 16 years,” Ms Connolly said.

“This partnership, and the children and crèches who take part, have allowed us to raise €3.9m which has helped thousands of vulnerable children across the country. The partnership agreement we have in place with Danone is not an endorsement of any product under the Danone group and there is no reference to infant formula or breastfeeding in any of the materials developed for the Toddle.

“Danone have assured us of their compliance with the WHO guidelines. We appreciate you taking the time to write such a comprehensive letter to us and will consider this as part our next evaluation of this sponsorship.”

More on this topic

Limerick 'breastfeeding-friendly' church joins calling for greater understanding of breastfeeding in public placesLimerick 'breastfeeding-friendly' church joins calling for greater understanding of breastfeeding in public places

Widespread benefits when mothers breastfeed babies, says studyWidespread benefits when mothers breastfeed babies, says study

Teacher granted breast-feeding breaks extensionTeacher granted breast-feeding breaks extension

Baby show urged to rethink sponsor Baby show urged to rethink sponsor

More in this Section

Sterling slides to 90p against euro on prospects of Brexit Halloween frightSterling slides to 90p against euro on prospects of Brexit Halloween fright

EU's Vestager set ‘to start Amazon competition probe’ as Ursula von der Leyen talks about US tech firms paying taxEU's Vestager set ‘to start Amazon competition probe’ as Ursula von der Leyen talks about US tech firms paying tax

Cork must make some key planning decisions if goal is civic and economic core to be proud of in 20 yearsCork must make some key planning decisions if goal is civic and economic core to be proud of in 20 years

CRH's €1.6bn sale plan in Europe engenders tepid reaction from investorsCRH's €1.6bn sale plan in Europe engenders tepid reaction from investors


Lifestyle

Tea dunking is not just for cosy winter evenings. Biscuits are handy in the summer months for picnics or to keep you going on long hikes.Michelle Darmody's tricks for perfect home made biscuits

Apply sunscreen throughout the day, says Helen O’CallaghanBurning issue: Children's skin needs added protection from the sun

Skincare guru Dr Raj Arora explains how this cleansing technique can make a big difference.Why you should follow the 60 second rule when washing your face, according to an expert

Karen Murray visited the island which is the smallest country in EU.Malta proves the best things come in small packages

More From The Irish Examiner