Ali Hewson: Charities ‘knocked’ by recent scandals

Ali Hewson, a lifelong campaigner for social causes along with her husband Bono, has said that charities have taken a “knock” from recent scandals.

“Charities have had a terrible knock and it’s hard enough to raise money as it is,” she told the Irish Examiner.

“But I think that with recent news stories it’s been very difficult.”

She was talking at the ISPCC Brown Thomas Fashion Show and luncheon in Dublin yesterday.

Commenting on the annual lunch, now in its 16th year, she said every fundraiser is important, especially ones for the ISPCC.

“I think every fundraising event is really important.

“This is one great charity and everybody should support this.

“Children need this.”

The annual event has raised almost €1,000,000 for the children’s charity.

The president of the ISPCC, Caroline Downey, hosted the event.

She told the Irish Examiner she was very grateful the children’s charity continued to receive support.

“It’s just amazing that [the support] still continues after all these years — the support of Brown Thomas and how important it is to the ISPCC and how crucial these events are,” said Ms Downey.

“Every woman in there is supporting us and it’s fantastic.”

ISPCC ambassador Amanda Byram launched the event yesterday, which had almost 400 guests at the Intercontinental Hotel in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.

“The work that the ISPCC does is unbelievable and the support they give to children is instrumental,” she said.

“In a sense, their job is to give every child the opportunity to be happy and be safe.

“To be, that’s their birthright, and it’s our responsibility to give them that.”

Also in attendance yesterday was X Factor judge and ISPCC ambassador Louis Walsh, who is a long-time supporter of the charity.

Commenting on the Irish contingent in the reality show, he said viewers would recognise some of the performers.

“There are about 10 Irish people, different acts. I’m not giving you names,” he said.

“You’ll know one or two of them. There are about 10 different acts that we saw, that got through in Dublin. I expect one or two of them to go to live shows.”

Also in attendance yesterday were Moira Ryan, Jane Given, Yvonne Connolly, and Sharon Smurfit.

They were given a viewing of the new autumn winter 2016 international collections from Brown Thomas’s Designer Rooms.


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