48 charities are directly involved in suicide care in Ireland
Published 09/07/2016 | 00:00
Ireland has 48 non-profit organisations which are directly involved in some form of suicide care including counselling, prevention and information.
Of these, 31 are registered, and have a reported 153 staff.
One of these organisations is Console - which will be closed down shortly following revelations of financial irregularities.
Nearly half the charities are based in Dublin, with significant numbers also in Cork and Kerry.
Financial data was available for 29 of the suicide charities after the filing of accounts with the Companies Registration Office in 2014.
Pieta House had the largest turnover in 2014 with a reported income of €5.4m.
Six reported an income of €500,000 in 2014.
Public funding for several of the suicide organisations comes from a range of sources including the HSE, the National Lottery, Tusla the child and family agency, county councils and the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
Other funding was given by the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Department of the Environment.
The HSE's National Office for Suicide Prevention spent €4.4m in 2014 with the largest grant given to the National Suicide Research Foundation.
It gave €582,998 to the Samaritans, €548,000 to Console and €503,000 to Pieta House.
Shine received a grant of €303,506.
Ivan Cooper, director of advocacy at The Wheel, which supports charities, said: "The charity sector cannot continue to lurch from controversy to controversy - the work of the sector is much too important for that.
"It is the people and communities supported by charities that suffer every time a controversy occurs. We must end this cycle.
"Charities embody an immensely positive social value in Ireland.
"They result from a culture where people take initiatives to address social issues in their communities, and this approach is supported by the public and State entities.
"This vital work must be placed on firm footing, one that provides the necessary transparency and accountability for the public while supporting the trustees, staff and volunteers of charities to do their work.
"In short, we need a coherent policy framework for charities to operate in. We need effective and proportionate reporting for charities."