MS Ireland operates in accordance with a number of codes applicable to our work. These codes are a combination of best practice guidelines, policies and procedures that protect the people we work with and make our work transparent and above reproach.
We are pleased to announce that MS Ireland is listed on The Governance Code Register of Compliance
The Governance Code for the Community, Voluntary and Charitable Sector in Ireland - Principles of Good Governance
On 13th July 2013 the Board signed up to the principles of Good Governance in the Governance Code and has been working on the process of signing up to the Code since then. On 28th January 2017 the Board certified its compliance with the Governance Code with the following two exceptions:
2.1(b) The CE is appointed as Company Secretary. MS Ireland has a dedicated Governance Committee of the Board which meets regularly and are satisfied that this ensures governance processes and controls are appropriate and the necessary checks and balances are in place.
2.2(e) MS Ireland does not have an internal audit function. Given the size of the organisation, we have sufficient controls in place and oversight of the controls”.
Leading our organisation
Exercising control over our organisation
Being transparent and accountable
Behaving with integrity
MS Ireland was awarded Triple Lock membership by the Charities Institute Ireland. It operates to the Triple Lock standards - transparent reporting, good fundraising and governance
The Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising is a guide to best practice developed by a steering group set up in response to the Charities Act 2009.
MS Ireland are complaint with the Code of Fundraising Practice and we are working towards compliance on Guidelines for Charitable Organisations on Fundraising from the Public.
• Improve fundraising practice
• Promote high levels of accountability and transparency by organisations fundraising from the public
• Provide clarity and assurances to donors and prospective donors about the organisations they support.
The Board and Chief Executive of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ireland are committed to maintaining the highest standards of honesty, openness and accountability. Members and employees are often the first people who realise that there may be something seriously wrong within an organisation such as MS Ireland.
The purpose of the Whistleblowing Policy is to outline the procedures for dealing with whistleblowing concerns, to confirm MS Ireland’s commitment to observing and maintaining the highest standards of honesty, openness and accountability in all its practices and to re-iterate the availability of existing policies for addressing other less serious non-whistleblowing issues and grievances.
This Policy aims to encourage and enable people to raise serious concerns within MS Ireland through appropriate channels.
MS Ireland complies with the standards contained in Boardmatch Ireland’s Transparency Scale. ’A’ Standard
Visit Boardmatch Ireland’s Transparency Scale website for further information
MS Ireland can offer financial assistance to people with MS to help cover the costs of some expenses associated with the condition. Voluntary Branches raise this money through their fundraising activities.
MS Ireland is fully committed to safeguarding the well-being of all the children and young people with whom we work. Our policy on child protection is in accordance with Children First, the national guidelines for the protection and welfare of children.
MS Ireland is committed to promoting the rights of the child including the participation of children and young people in matters that affect them. A set of guidelines have been introduced by MS Ireland and all staff and volunteers involved agreed to adhere to these guidelines in the work they do involving young participant.
MS Ireland is dedicated to implementing and promoting measures to protect the right of all service users to be treated with dignity and respect and is committed to ensuring that the organisation provides a safe environment which is free from all forms of abuse, including discrimination, bullying, harassment or sexual harassment, neglect and mistreatment. In achieving this aim, MS Ireland is committed to ensuring that there are policies, procedures, guidance and training for staff and service users that prevent any infringement of this right.
We need YOUR help in contacting TDs and Senators MS Ireland will be holding an event in Leinster House AV room on Wednesday, 3rd October 2018 at 10am. We will be presenting the MS Care Centre Business Case and we will be using the opportunity to call on TDs and Senators to provide a further €600,000 in annual investment which would allow us to cater for the increased demand on our Care Centre. We need your help in contacting TDs and Senators to ask them to come along to the event – if you can attend your local TD’s clinic, please bring the event to their attention and ask them to go along. You can also email them – you can find who your local TD is and get their contact details using this website: https://www.whoismytd.com/ Below is a draft email that you can use – please feel free to adapt the email to include information on your own personal situation and what their support would mean to you. If you receive a response from your TD saying they intend to go along, please let our Information, Advocacy and Research Assistant Aoife Kirwan know so she can follow up with their office to remind them beforehand – email firstname.lastname@example.org -------------------- Dear Deputy [insert name of TD], My name is [insert your name]. I am asking you to attend an AV room briefing on Wednesday, 3rd October at 10am. This briefing will be delivered by the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ireland (MS Ireland) regarding a request MS Ireland has put forward for further annual investment in their care centre. The MS Care Centre is a state-of-the-art respite facility. Admitting and welcoming 400 people annually, the care centre not only provides people living with MS and their caregivers a break but delivers a range of therapeutic services, neurological assessments and social activities. Due to decreased income, the care centre only opens 40 weeks per year. MS Ireland are requesting a further €600,000 in annual investment which would allow them to cater for the increased demand on the service. This would see the care centre open 350 days per year, providing an extra 1,128 bed-nights annually. This would allow additional people living with MS the chance to benefit from what the care centre has to offer (there are over 9,000 people living with MS in Ireland). Further investment will not only support people living with MS, it will also support voluntary carers, without whom care in the home would be impossible, putting further pressure on our health system and hospital funding. [If you have any personal details you would like to add in support of our ask, please feel free to write it in] As a member of your constituency, I am asking that you support MS Ireland by doing what you can to help secure this additional funding. Yours sincerely, [insert your name]
This week Teresa McShane tells us about the financial and professional implications of having MS and discovers it’s an emotional journey. Like any long-term illness or disability, MS can have far reaching implications and can literally turn one’s world upside-down. Obviously, all cases are different and vary in severity but in many cases, not only can one’s physical limitations be seriously challenged but also one’s mental, emotional and, more than likely, financial ones. The career aspirations you had may have to be radically overhauled; the lifestyle you had imagined for yourself and your family revised. And ultimately, in order to keep as well as you can, it may mean giving up work at some stage. I had always loved working; it gave me a sense of purpose and belonging. I worked hard from the age of 18 and despite a diagnosis of MS when I was 23, I carried on in employment, through ups and downs, until I was nearly 40. I felt like a worthy member of society who was contributing. It allowed me to live a semi-normal life. Go shopping, go on holiday or treat myself and not feel guilty. This very sense of value I put on myself boosted my self-esteem and mental wellbeing. Like many of my friends with MS that I have spoken to, I was determined to keep going and not be beaten by this inconvenient illness. We forged on like ‘valiant soldiers’ but really, we should have been minding ourselves and listening to our bodies. We dragged ourselves out of those relapses, so we could keep going… until the next one. We were determined to live a ‘normal’ life but found ourselves in a vicious circle of working too hard, exhaustion and sick leave, until finally we copped ourselves on and realised something had to give - or we didn’t and our bodies called time. And that is exactly what happened. So now that I was no longer working, who was I? What was my purpose? I was a leech, a drain on finances, I needed minding, looking after and being supported financially. That mortgage that we took out together when we were both employed now fell on the head of my husband. The monthly outgoings were still the same, but the income was reduced. And when the recession hit and things were oh, so tough, he was the only one who could drag us out of it. All the while I felt like an impotent bystander, a ‘Sitting Duck’! And so began the downward spiral. That mental wellbeing and sense of value I was talking about started to deteriorate - eroded by guilt and feelings of inadequacy. Slowly at first because when I first had to give up work, I assumed I would just take a break and then get right back in the ring. I didn’t realise that one year… two years… 10 years on I would still be outside the workforce and merely a social welfare statistic. But here I was, and that takes its toll on anyone’s emotional and mental resilience. I know I am lucky. When I ceased working I went on Disability and was transferred to the Invalidity Pension the following year. A weekly payment that allowed me NOT to work. This sounds fantastic, you might think - being paid without having to work. Nice one! And for some people, this is the answer to their prayers. But definitely not for all. Many people of my age (48) with MS, who have worked hard to build their careers and have found themselves on Invalidity Pension yearn to go back to work. For starters, the weekly payment doesn’t come close to the full-time weekly wage they were used to and/or needed. But more importantly, they don’t want to be dependent on the State. They don’t want to be dependent on anyone. But common sense must prevail and accepting the way it is doesn’t have to be defeatist. I have been given a valuable commodity… time. Time to take time, to rest when I need to and time to spend valuable moments with my other ‘valiant soldiers!
Today, 13th September we celebrate one of our all-time favourite children’s authors and friend of the MS Readathon, the legendary man that is Roald Dahl. As we step into this magnificent world of childlike imagination and wonder we can’t help but notice that his books are still as fantastic today as they were when we were your age! Roald Dahl is a man that needs little introduction and if we were to tell you all of the reasons why we have chosen to celebrate his works over other authors we would be here a very long time! We are so looking forward to this week when we get to lose ourselves in this fantastical world where anything is possible. Isn’t that the point of reading? When you pick up any of Dahl’s books you know you’re about to be transported to a topsy-turvy world where the witty language is as inventive as the characters using it. One of our most treasured Dahl-isms is actually from the film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory but originates in the timeless book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: Willy Wonka is talking about some of the things the children can taste in his lickable wallpaper room. He then says matter-of-factly, “The snozzberries taste like snozzberries.” Veruca Salt responds, “Snozzberries? Who ever heard of a snozzberry?” Wonka puts an end to this by simply stating, “We are the music-makers, and we are the makers of dreams.” It doesn’t matter one bit that we don’t know what a snozzberry is, now does it? The point is that you should never stop using your imagination. It can be whatever you want it to be! Dahl has created so many stories within so many books and each is as varied as the last. One of the things that makes a Roald Dahl story different from any other is his unique ability to take the fantastical and make it seem completely normal. The BFG being the perfect example – shortly into the book there is no doubt left and you begin to believe that there are Big Friendly Giants out there delivering good dreams to children! But of course, Dahl was also a poet and what a scrumptious collection of poems he left behind! If you haven’t read Revolting Rhymes we insist that you go to your local library and find it today! Each poem is based on a traditional fairytale but naturally Dahl wanted to put even more magic into the tales so he created his own endings to wow all of his little readers. Children’s literature owes a lot to Roald Dahl and we are so thankful he shared his wonderful imagination with us. Now go pick up one of his books, open your imagination and enter the lickswishy world of Roald Dahl. Calling on all bookworms! Open a wonderful world of adventure and imagination through reading for a great cause and sign up to the MS Readathon
Volunteers Required The MS Team at University of Limerick (UL) are looking for the 'first' volunteers to test their Activity Matters in MS web-based intervention. The 12 week programme will guide you through choosing the right activity, getting started and keeping exercising. The website has been developed using the latest research, theory and importantly the views of people with Multiple Sclerosis. To find out more please visit https://www.msresearch.ie/activity-matters Get in touch If you would like to take part please contact email@example.com
Online questionnaire Fintan Murphy (MSc Physiotherapy) along with Professor Susan Coote (School of Allied Health) of the University of Limerick are inviting you to take part in an online questionnaire examining physical activity behaviour in people with Multiple Sclerosis. This is an international project in collaboration with researchers in the USA and in Germany. Who can participate? People with a diagnosis of MS and aged 18 years or older can participate in this study. We are inviting people with MS who “fit into” all levels of physical activity to take part. So, you do not have to be a physically active person to take part in this study. Aim of research study: The aim of the research is to understand the factors associated with physical activity so that future studies can design and appropriate exercise programmes for people with MS. What do I have to do? If you decide to take part you will complete an online questionnaire consisting of 63 questions. The questionnaire will take 40 minutes (approx) and you can complete it over one or two sittings if desired. Click on the link below for more information and to start the survey
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