Ireland’s first National Philanthropy Policy should include measures to make more relevant data available, and a national communications campaign to encourage philanthropic giving.
These proposals are the subject of a consultation by the country’s Department of Rural and Community Development, which runs until 30 June.
Once finalised, the policy will begin in 2023 and operate for an initial five years, with a group chaired by the Government publishing annual updates and data on its implementation.
Among the policy’s five objectives are “increase awareness of the value of philanthropic giving”, including through a national communications campaign and annual awareness event; and “activate strategies for collection and utilisation of data and research to inform and guide decision making in philanthropy”.
The section on data notes that while there are already several sources of data and knowledge relating to philanthropy, “there is a lack of integration, coordination and trending analysis, leading to significant data gaps when seeking a full understanding of the philanthropic sector in Ireland”.
Another objective is to create an “enabling environment and culture for Irish philanthropy to thrive and maximise its potential to benefit society”. This could include tax incentives, as well as encouraging professionals such as tax advisers and accountants to discuss philanthropy as an option with their clients.
The final two objectives are improving collaboration between Government, nonprofits and other relevant stakeholders, and building capacity in the nonprofit sector. This final objective will ensure that philanthropists can have confidence that their donations will have a meaningful social impact.
EFA member Charities Institute Ireland has been part of a National Advisory Group created to develop the policy.
The institute’s chief operating officer Scott Kelley is urging charities to respond to the consultation, calling the new policy an “incredible opportunity”, and says:
“The development of this National Philanthropy Policy in collaboration with key stakeholders is a significant step towards fostering a more just Ireland and positively impacting the lives of many. It will provide a framework for philanthropy, government, and beneficiaries to work collaboratively and effectively, creating an environment where philanthropy can grow and thrive.
“This policy will set clear objectives and specific actions to enable philanthropy to flourish, supporting the knowledge and capacity development of the sector while identifying the necessary support systems for its maximum potential.”
Picture by Lukas Kloeppel via Pexels
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