MS Ireland has formally committed to complying with the Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising
MS Ireland is fully committed to achieving the standards contained
within the Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising.
• 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 of MS Ireland have considered the Statement and believe we meet the standards it sets out. Where we have not complied with the Statement we have provided an explanation.
MS Ireland's report on our fundraising activities is available in our most recent Annual Report 2015
We welcome your feedback on our performance via any of the contact points provided. Read our Feedback and Complaints Procedure.
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.
The Board of MS Ireland endorse the following "Donor Charter"
• As a charity seeking donations from the public, we, the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ireland, (MS Ireland) aim to comply with the Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising.
• Our pledge is to treat all our donors with respect, honesty and openness.
• We commit to being accountable and transparent so that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in MS Ireland.
• We promise we will effectively apply your gifts to use for their intended purposes.
• We commit that you, our donors and prospective donors will:
• Be informed of the organisation’s mission, and of the way the organisation intends to use donated resources.
• Be informed of the identity of those serving on the organisation’s governing board, and that the board will exercise prudent judgement in its stewardship responsibilities.
• Have access to the organisation’s most recent financial statements.
• Be assured your gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given.
• Receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition.
• Be assured that information about your donation is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the extent provided by law.
• Expect that all relationships with individuals representing the charity will be dealt with professionally.
• Be informed whether those seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organisation or hired third party agents.
• Have easily available the agreed procedures for making and responding to complaints.
• Have the opportunity for any names to be deleted from mailing lists. MS Ireland mailing lists are not shared with third parties.
• Receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers to questions you might have of the organisation.
If you do have a comment about any aspect of our work, you can contact MS Ireland in writing, by telephone or email. In the first instance, your comment will be dealt with by our CEO. Please give us as much information as possible and let us know how you would like us to respond, providing relevant contact details.
Write to: Chief Executive, MS Ireland, 80 Northumberland Road, Dublin 4 Tel: 01 6781600 Email: email@example.com
The Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising sets out the following in relation to Disclosure:
“Donors have the right to be informed of the status and authority of those soliciting donations; for example, donors will be informed if fundraisers are employees of the organisation or third party agents”.
MS Ireland is open about whether those seeking donations on its behalf are volunteers, employees of the organisation or are third party agents. Anyone fundraising on behalf of MS Ireland must ensure that prospective donors are aware of their status, i.e. volunteers, employees or third party agents.
If or when a member of the public enquires about the employment standing of a fundraiser they must receive an honest and open answer. The standing in this case relates to whether or not a fundraiser is a volunteer, a paid employee of the charitable organisation or a third party agent working on behalf of the charity.
As a valued supporter of MS Ireland, the board know it is important that we facilitate any feedback or complaints that you may have. If for any reason, you should feel aggrieved then we will endeavour to do our utmost to make sure that we come to a satisfactory resolution. We feel it is important that we learn from our mistakes so your feedback is very important to us.
We are committed to ensuring that all our communications and dealings with the general public and supporters are of the highest possible standard. We listen and respond to your views so that we can continue to improve. We are committed to upholding the Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising available here , We welcome all feedback.
Therefore we aim to ensure that:
• it is as easy as possible to make a complaint;
• we treat as a complaint any clear expression of dissatisfaction with our operations which calls for a response;
• we treat it seriously whether it is made by telephone, letter, fax, email or in person;
• we deal with it quickly and politely;
• we respond accordingly - for example, with an explanation, or an apology where we have got things wrong, and information on any action taken etc;
• we learn from complaints, use them to improve, and monitor them at our Board.
If you have feedback or a complaint about any of our work you can contact our Chief Executive by email, telephone or in writing:
Ava Battles, Chief Executive, MS Ireland, 80 Northumberland Road, Dublin 4; Tel: 01 6781600; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If your complaint is received over the phone we will endeavour to have it resolved there and then (where possible), if it is received by email, fax or post we will acknowledge it within 7 days and do everything to resolve any complaints within 14 working days. If this is not possible, we will explain why and provide a new deadline.
If you are not happy with our response, you may get in touch again by writing to MS Ireland’s Chairman. The Chairman will ensure that your appeal is considered at Board level and will respond within two weeks of this consideration by Board members.
Finally, if you feel that you are not satisfied, we can direct you to an independent monitoring group who will assess your complaint in an objective manner.
Kiss Goodbye to MS, 18th - 21st May with Costa We are delighted to announce Costa are joining MS Ireland to help Kiss Goodbye to MS. The weekend of May 18th - 21st will raise awareness of Multiple Sclerosis and funds for MS research. Hope to see you there!! Drop in to a participating store near you & have a brewtiful day! #kissgoodbyetoMS #bringinguscloser
This week the MS and Me AnonMS blogger, a health care professional, shares with us an insider’s perspective on disclosure. Does disclosing MS status lead to the condition overshadowing all other aspects of a person’s life and reduce them down to a diagnosis? There are times when I am tempted to mention it. Particularly when I’m having a bad day and someone in work is complaining about their back pain or their thyroid issues or their respiratory problem. I can have a brief fleeting fantasy of myself smiling and nodding and chipping in with “Well, with my multiple sclerosis…”. That’s as far as the fantasy ever goes though. Because after that bombshell I know there would be shocked faces, stammered words and the overwhelming sense of panic that I’ve dropped the explosive and can’t undo the damage. It’s not that I feel their health issues are not serious or not problematic. They just all seem so much safer and palatable to discuss over morning coffee. So, I make sympathetic noises and say nothing. I work in healthcare, so I can see the health system from both perspectives. My colleagues are wonderful, kind and caring people but the problem with working in healthcare is that our knowledge of a condition can be best understood by that sad case study or this complex patient. Our vision is often distorted by our circumstances. We tend to see people at their lowest point and on their worst day, when staying at home isn’t an option and forget about the many other days when they were coping and managing just fine. Worst case scenarios tend to overshadow the “living well” in our minds. This is problematic for me because, were I to tell anyone in work about my diagnosis, I know their understanding would be coloured by a previous interaction or difficult discharge that may have absolutely no bearing on my circumstances. Yet this will be their most memorable reference and example of MS. I know they would paint my outlook with the same brush whether they realise it or not. People with MS are still very misunderstood and pitied. It can have the ability to overshadow all other aspects of a person’s life and reduce them down to a diagnosis. I have seen people rebranded as sad anecdotes and cautionary tales. I don’t want that to happen to me. I am generally not someone who wallows in self-pity or spends time wishing that things could have turned out differently. My diagnosis gave me the drive to do the things and see the places I had been putting off. The next relapse could be closer than I think and I don’t want to look back and wish “if only I had…”. If people find out I have MS I want them to be surprised. I want them to have had the opportunity to see me, without the distraction of MS, as someone who achieved a lot and was a good colleague or friend. I want people to see me without those two letters blocking their view.
James Tracy, Leinster and Ireland rugby player, tells us about his sister Sara-Jane Tracy and how much she inspires him. “Family is a unique gift that needs to be appreciated and treasured, even when they’re driving you crazy, which happens a lot when you're the youngest and only boy with two sisters!!. As much as they make you mad, annoy you, put you back in your box from time to time, these are the people who know you the best and who love you the most. As the saying goes 'you don't know what you've got till it's gone', it's true, but we are all guilty of taking life's gifts for granted. For my sister Sara-Jane, being diagnosed with MS pales in comparison to being told she couldn't do what she loved anymore. Horses were not just a hobby for her, from an early age they were her outlet, her job, her life. Through diet, exercise, hard work and sheer determination (she gets her stubbornness from the mother!), she proved the experts wrong and was back on the horse in a matter of months after being told she would never ride again. Like everyone, she has her good days, and she has her bad days. I will never fully understand or feel the struggle she endures every day. What I do know, is the journey she has embarked on. From the lowest lows of not being able to dress herself, having to learn how to write again to losing her kidneys early this year, to the highs of getting to ride again whilst juggling a strict dialysis schedule, incredibly she is now back competing. My sister is not only someone I love with MS, she's someone I admire.” Do you love someone with MS? Then spread the love, put those thinking caps on and hold a Kiss Goodbye to MS fundraiser this May! Now is the time to rally your friends to support MS research, help fund our services and get creative. Whether you want to hold a morning tea, run a marathon, throw a movie night, or even fire walk, your fundraising options are endless and no idea is too crazy! Register now and hold a fundraiser to help us get closer to a cure for MS. www.kissgoodbyetoms.ie
This week, in a letter to her nearest and dearest, Willeke Van Eeckhoutte puts down in words how she really feels. “What do you want me to say?” Dearly Beloved, What do you want me to say? What is it you don’t understand? When someone like you says, "Well, what do you want me to say?" during moments when I feel less than cheerful, it sounds like a rejection. Not just of me, but of your understanding of what I, and we, have been going through for the past 13 years. After all this time, all the wisdom we have gained, we could be the writers of the largest MS encyclopaedia! Instead, being asked that question sounds like a betrayal. It’s like you’re using the illness I never asked for as a slur against me. The truth is, I could write you a hundred different letters and a thousand expert explanations about my symptoms and my thoughts on all those shiny plaques on my MRI images. Nonetheless, I often think, "How can you possibly relate to my life if you don’t have MS?But, with all its intricate, demeaning and unpredictable symptoms, how could I ever expect you to?" The answer is, you honestly cannot know what it is to be me, and this is not my rejection of you, far from it. But, I do need to plea for your insight, patience and empathy. Just as I am struggling to find the words in this letter, MS is an ever-changing plotline that forces me to reinvent my life’s storyline as we speak. When I snap at you, I don’t mean to. More to the point, you were probably not the problem. Like when slamming a door in anger, the doorframe, the wall or the house aren’t ever reasons for the action. Sometimes I am absolutely worn out, totally exhausted because of my illness. This exhaustion feels even more pronounced when people express how they don’t understand me. I’m tired of the illness that has me acting in ways I normally wouldn’t. I carry an imperfect brain because of illness with a fickle revolving-door manifestation. It causes me to feel claustrophobic within myself. I know that keeping up with an ever-changing illness is as challenging for you as it is for me. I also know that there are times when you’d rather be somewhere else instead of being near me. What I want you to get is I don’t wallow in self-pity nor do I jump up and down in elation because I was diagnosed with this obnoxious illness. MS has impacted so many aspects of my life, it is part of what makes my life what it is today. Makes me how I am today. Flawed? Yes. Fickle? Perhaps. Happy? I sure am! Hopeful that you would understand me? Absolutely. What I ask for is simple but it isn’t easy. You are part of my walk through life and am glad to have you with me. When you feel exasperated by what I say or do, please step into my shoes with me for one minute and we can work out what’s really going on. Lots of love, Willeke Please don't forget to check out Willeke's blog Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis and Me
Balloon launch and music to mark World MS Day Cllr Francis Timmons in Partnership with the Dublin West ''Brendan Kenna'' MS Ireland Branch will host a balloon launch & music at 7.30pm outside in the Waterside Carpark to mark World MS Day on Wednesday, 30th May. Followed by light refreshments. All welcome! Former Branch chair and local councillor , Cllr Timmons says '' Thankfully Research is bringing us closer to ending MS. To reach this we need to work together as a worldwide MS community to find ways to improve life with MS now and end MS forever. The #bringinguscloser campaign is about connecting people affected by MS with those involved in MS research, including scientists, students, nurses, fundraisers, volunteers, and more. It's a chance to come together to celebrate what we've achieved in MS research so far, and share our hopes and dreams for the future. One of the former Chairpersons of the Branch the Late Brendan Kenna said make the most of life and least of MS and it's a fitting quote as we celebrate World MS Day 2018 '' Cllr Timmons says '' I also want to use this World MS Day event to Honour former Chairperson of the Dublin West ''Brendan Kenna'' MS Ireland Branch Michael Fox who sadly passed away 18th February 2018 He is sadly missed by his family and many friends and colleagues in the community and voluntary sector including the Southside Partnership, ACTS and the Multiple Sclerosis Society. He was actively involved in the branch in many roles and contributed a huge amount to the MS Community, I was very honoured to have served on the Dublin West ''Brendan Kenna'' MS Ireland Branch with Michael '' Current Branch Chair Gary Connolly says '' The last year for the branch has been really hard loosing Michael Fox, the branch has suffered the loss of a great man, Michael was a huge part of the branch and his tireless work and commitment will never be forgotten, we are working hard to keep the branch going, the branch really needs support from people in the areas of West Dublin in any way, shape or form, either helping with fundraising or coming on the committee to help keep up the good work and ensure that the branch continues to make a difference to people with MS in the West Dublin area for the next 26 years'' Branch member Angela Connolly who lives with MS says '' I am living with MS for 10 years and it does not define me it is part of my life, not my whole life and I have to adjust my life to live with the illness as part of me, the branch is very important to many people with MS providing practical supports I remain very positive about the future as medication is all the time improving'' For further information contact Cllr Francis Timmons 087 286 9315 or Gary Connolly 085 888 7466
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