Children’s charity Barnardos is to close for one week in a bid to cut costs.
The charity has taken the move because of repeated cuts to its budget in the past number of years. This has led to a reduction of its statutory income, while the charity has also pointed out that it has suffered from a decline in donations from the public.
A spokesperson for the charity said the decision was made last December to lay staff off for one week.
The spokesperson said all the families and children engaged with the charity, as well as the 400 staff and volunteers, have had months’ of notice of the decision, and that the closure was at a time which would have least impact.
All Barnardos services will be closed this week, with the exception of its network of shops in Cork, Wexford, Carlow, and Dublin, which will remain open. A number of fundraising staff will also be available should people wish to donate to the charity.
Anyone trying to contact Barnardos this week by phone will be advised to leave a message. In the case of emergency calls, including those regarding child protection concerns, people can call a dedicated mobile number.
All other queries will be responded to when the organisation resumes full normal services on Monday, Aug 20.
Business and charity advisory firm Grant Thornton said the decision by the charity was not unexpected and pointed out that more charities could follow suit.
Partner with the firm, Turlough Mullen said similar stories are likely to arise.
“This is merely the tip of the iceberg. The charity and non-profit sector has expanded greatly in the last 20 years — with nearly 75% of all non-profits in Ireland being created in that time period. At the same time, the sector has never been in such a perilous state due to the economic downturn.”
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