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Friday 29 August 2014

Trocaire goes into red even after €1m donation

Gordon Deegan

Published 19/08/2013 | 05:00

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ONE bequest of almost €1m from an anonymous donor was not enough to prevent aid agency Trocaire sliding into the red last year.

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Trocaire is the overseas charity of the Catholic Church and the agency's 2012-2013 annual report confirms that the amount received in bequests in the year to the end of February (2013) almost doubled from €2.38m to €4.16m.

The chief factor behind the increase was the one-off bequest of almost €1m.

A spokesman for the agency said yesterday: "The value of bequests varies from year to year but last year we were extremely fortunate and grateful to receive a single bequest of almost €1m.

"To receive such a large sum is a tremendous affirmation of the faith placed in Trocaire by our supporters."

However, this was not enough to stop the charity recording a loss of €4.4m last year.

In spite of the loss, the charity remains cash rich with €45.6m in the bank.

Explaining the loss, the spokesman said: "The difference is accounted for by the fact that Trocaire did not launch any emergency appeal last year.

"In 2011 the emergency appeal for East Africa saw the public donate €10m to support our humanitarian programme.

"Trocaire's response to the drought and famine in East Africa is to build long-term resilience and so a portion of this money was spent in 2012 as we continued to support vulnerable people in the region."

He pointed out: "Last year our Lenten income and grants received through institutional donors both rose, indicating the continued support for our work from both the public and institutional funders."

He said: "Our income and expenditure for 2012/13 was in line with our budget for the financial year."

The trustees of Trocaire include leading figures of the Catholic Church in Ireland – Cardinal Sean Brady, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop Dermot Clifford and Archbishop Michael Neary.

The figures show that Trocaire raised €60m in revenues last year, compared with €66m in 2011, and spent €64.7m, compared with €61.3m, in 2011.

LENTEN

The charity raised €8.6m from its Lenten campaign, while last year it spent €4.8m on fundraising and publicity.

The charity's largest source of income is the Government's Irish Aid, which last year contributed €18.4m.

The accounts show that the charity's former executive director, Justin Kilcullen, was in receipt of a salary on a scale of between €135,000 to €150,000 last year.

The charity recently appointed a new boss, Eamon Meehan, and a spokesman said: "During the recruitment process for the new executive director, the Board of Trustees reviewed the salary scale and the incoming executive director will be paid between €120,000-€130,000."

The spokesman said: "Despite the difficult economic circumstances facing many people, public support for Trocaire's work remained stable and institutional funding increased."

Irish Independent

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