Nosedive in CRC public donations since last year

Funds raised from CRC flag days and Santa Bear appeal drop by over €200,000

As the CRC became engulfed in controversy last year, funds raised through its traditional Santa Bear appeal and flag days fell to €190,934 from over €404,500 in 2012. Photograph: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

As the CRC became engulfed in controversy last year, funds raised through its traditional Santa Bear appeal and flag days fell to €190,934 from over €404,500 in 2012. Photograph: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

Fri, Jun 20, 2014, 01:00

The CRC interim administrator’s report has highlighted a precipitous drop in public donations to the organisation since last year, saying its new board should determine its future fundraising strategy as a matter of priority.

“For obvious reasons . . . the CRC has experienced a sharp reduction in the funds being raised from its fundraising activities and, in 2014, staff previously assigned to fundraising were redeployed to other roles within the CRC,” the administrator reports.

As the CRC became engulfed in controversy last year, funds raised from the public through its traditional Santa Bear appeal and flag days fell to €190,934 from more than €404,500 in 2012.

When direct costs and overheads were taken into account, the decline in fundraising in 2013 resulted in a net loss of €13,406 from such activities that year. The CRC had made €516,193 in such fundraising income in 2011 and almost €418,000 in 2010.

Major donations

In spite of the fall-off in donations from the public last year, major donations, which are accounted for separately, remained steady at €101,309 in 2013, compared to €100,327 in 2012.

“It should also be noted that the CRC does not publish an annual report. An annual report giving comprehensive details of the CRC activities, services, funds or fundraising sources should be published,” the report states.

“As in the case of other charities and lotteries, the current fundraising environment is proving difficult.”

Fundraising constitutes only a small proportion of the CRC’s total income, which was €19.38 million last year.

This includes HSE payments and income from Friends & Supporters of the CRC (F&S), a wholly owned charity whose purpose is to provide financial support to the CRC.

The CRC also had €1.65 million in income last year from activities such as seating sales and programmes, its swimming pool, catering and training programmes.

In his recommendations, the administrator says the granting of donations and funding decisions by F&S should be a matter for the new board.

Specific purposes

He adds that “donations and any other funds provided to the CRC should be made for specific services/purposes/facilities”.

The administrator says the actions taken in relation to CRC and the recommendations made are considered proportionate. “It is hoped that the new board and chief executive officer will be supported in their efforts to restore confidence in the CRC as a charitable organisation delivering quality services.”