The Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation has launched a national appeal to help it raise an urgent €400,000 shortfall in funds required to run its service to the end of the year. The Foundation, which provides intensive home nursing care, funding and support to the families of children under four years old with brain damage, has been severely hit by the recession, a slowdown in the mobile phone recycling market and a reduction in its HSE grant.
The charity requires €2.7 million per annum to operate its services and less than 20 per cent comes from the State in the form of a HSE grant. It relies on fundraising for the balance and this latest shortfall could lead to the curtailment of the services it offers to hundreds of children across the country.
The charity is asking people to donate €5* in a nationwide fundraising drive which is supported by an extensive marketing campaign to increase awareness of the work it does across the country. The campaign, entitled ‘Bringing Home’ has been produced at no cost to the Jack & Jill Foundation. It calls on the general public for financial support and features the personal experiences and stories of many people linked to the charity including Brigid Flanagan from Termonfeckin, Co Louth and her three-year old son Richard, who requires 24-hour-a-day care. The seed funding for the campaign came from the fundraising efforts of the staff of Nestlé Ireland and the company’s marketing team who brought together their media partners (DDFH&B and Mindshare) and a group of professional suppliers to create the campaign. Brigid’s story can be viewed at jackandjill.ie
To date on Co Leitrim family is receiving help from this charity but since 1997, eight families with desperately ill children, have been supported as they bring their children back to where they belong, their own home.
Jack & Jill currently caters for children up to the age of four and funds up to 64 hours home nursing care per month for families. The charity’s resources are also coming under pressure due to the increasing difficulty in the handover of children under Jack & Jill’s wing when they reach four years old. At present there is no dedicated budget within the HSE for home nursing care for children with life limiting conditions.