Sunday 25 February 2018

Charity not taken for granted

Dear Editor, OVER THE last number of years I have written a letter to the Wicklow People in December/January thanking readers for their support during the year.

Concern is heavily reliant on the generosity of the Irish public for the work it does in 25 of the world's poorest countries.

We never take your support for granted. We can't.

I have been Chief Executive Officer at Concern since 2001. In February I leave the aid agency to work as Chairman of the newly formed Constitutional Convention.

It has been an extraordinary journey where I have witnessed some of the greatest pain and suffering in the world.

But I have also seen firsthand the very best of the human spirit. In the midst of devastating earthquakes, horrendous floods and shocking hunger, people perform unimaginable heroic deeds.

One of the frequent questions that all aid agencies are asked is how much they spend on administrative costs.

For every euro Concern receives, 91 cent goes directly to work in the field â?“ something which gives me great pride.

We are living in difficult economic times and I am conscious of the strains placed upon people and families. I thank you for your continued support and wish you a joyful and happy New Year. Tom Arnold, Chief Executive Officer, Concern Worldwide, Dublin 2.

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