The Jack & Jill Children's Foundation needs to raise €700,000 between now and the end of this year to be able to continue helping children and their families.
The foundation provides direct funding to families of children up to the age of five, who suffer severe physical and intellectual developmental delay. This allows them to purchase vital home respite care.
The charity also provides end-of-life care to all children up to the age of five, irrespective of their medical condition. Last year, 43 children died in their homes in the care of the foundation.
Details of how funds are raised and spent are contained in the charity's 2017 Annual Report, which was recently launched. According to it, home nursing care and respite was provided to 320 children and this was delivered by a highly qualified team of 12 liaison nurses, who led 700 nurses and carers into various homes and communities.
However, the report noted that while 2017 was a strong financial year, sustainability for the charity ‘is an ongoing issue'.
According to chairman of the Jack & Jill board, Donal Kavanagh, an additional €700,000 needs to be raised between now and December 31 to keep this year's budget on target.
"2017 was a strong financial year, with a surplus of €554,363 compared to a surplus of €471,604 in 2016. The number of families supported was up largely due to the increase in the age range of the children supported from four to five years of age, which came into effect in September 2017.
"This meant the number of children under our care and the costs involved increased throughout the year, with 135 new referrals in 2017, but extending our remit to five years of age was the right thing to do at the right time," he insisted.
He added that the annual report gives the charity a chance to thank its supporters and show what happens to the funds raised.
"The charity is triple locked under the Charities Institute Ireland standard in transparent reporting, good fundraising and governance and we always show where exactly the money goes in Jack & Jill - a very important message for the public in terms of charity donations," Mr Kavanagh said.
For more information on the foundation, click here