Barnardos Ireland has announced that it has taken the unprecedented step of closing its offices for a week due to financial pressures.
“In order to save costs and protect Barnardos services to children and families, all Barnardos offices and centres are closed for one week starting today, 13th August 2012,” the charity said.
Barnardos chief executive, Fergus Finlay, speaking on radio, said they had been forced to close because voluntary income had fallen in recent times. He said that despite reducing costs, including salaries, they had been forced into closing for a week to save money.
Barnardos fundraising target for this year is €7 million and Mr Finlay indicated that this figure would be difficult to meet. He cited the poor state of the Irish economy as a key factor in the fall in income.
Figures just released for 2011 show that the charity had a similar income (€24 million) to that in 2010 but costs increased to €25.5 million. Barnardos reserves stood at €7 million in 2011, down from nearly €9 million in 2010.
Some of the increase in costs was down to increased fundraising costs which were €3.3 million in 2011, against €2.1 million in 2010. Shops income was up and enabled the charity to post a profit of €120,000 in its charitable trading. Barnardos shops showed a loss in 2010.
Total fundraising income in 2011 was €6.7 million, a drop of €0.6 million from 2010. Apart from fundraising activities, which increased from €4.8 million to €5.2 million, most areas of fundraising showed a drop in income.