Abuse support group gains key financial life line

A SUPPORT group for victims of abuse has been promised a financial life line into the future by the Government – the same day as the charity got a €40,000 windfall and a glowing tribute from rock band U2, and their manager Paul McGuinness.

Health Minister, Micheal Martin, last night promised to fund services run by the support group, One in Four, into next year. There is to be a signed service agreement between the group and the Department of Health, outlining what services the department is funding, the department said last night.

Both sides are to meet again shortly to discuss the group’s current financial difficulties. The charity has been asked to outline its service plan for next year.

One in Four had announced on Monday that it was to close from the end of the month, because of a financial constraints, and a broken promise on funding from the Government.

Last night, Colm O’Gorman, director of One in Four, said he was relieved. “At the very least we now know that the department is eager and committed to ensuring the survival of our organisation.

“There are still some issues regarding the funding of our therapy programme, which is at the core of our organisation.

“We will have to get back to the department and address this,” he added.

Yesterday was a day of high emotion for all involved with the group. The U2 donation followed hot on the heels of a commitment by One in Four’s staff that they were to work up until Christmas in the interest of their clients, even if they were to receive no pay.

Speaking about the U2 donation, Mr O’Gorman said: “Their donation of €40,000 will allow the organisation to continue to work to support our clients and give us an opportunity to secure funding that will allow us to work towards long term survival.

“The public support accorded the organisation by the members of U2 and their manager, Paul McGuinness, and the hundreds of individuals who have contacted One in Four to lend their support has been quite overwhelming,” he added.

And he said the decision by the staff to work up until Christmas, irrespective of pay, was taken because staff felt they would not abandon the hundreds of clients they support every week.

“That the staff of this service are deeply committed to their clients and passionate about their work was never for me beyond question, but when they each approached me to say that they were not prepared to abandon their clients, the depth of their extraordinary commitment and integrity became clear,” he said.

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