The famed generosity of the people of Northern Ireland is helping keep vital community and voluntary services alive.
That was the key message at today’s launch of Philanthropy Fortnight, the annual celebration of charitable giving in Northern Ireland.
Sandara Kelso-Robb, Strategic Advisor to Giving Northern Ireland, explained that Philanthropy Fortnight highlighted the successes of the charity sector, while exploring new ways of promoting and developing strategic giving.
“Philanthropy Fortnight is all about looking at ways that we can be more strategic, more focused so we can continue to achieve tangible benefits for society. This year’s programme looks at all aspects of philanthropy and celebrates the massive contribution it makes to disadvantaged communities,” she said.
Northern Ireland’s fourth annual festival of charitable giving was launched at Clifton House, the former poor house built in the 18th century by the Belfast Charitable Society.
Its two week series of workshops, seminars and networking events from April 18 to 29, celebrates the generosity, time, commitment and support that thousands of Northern Ireland people give every day to causes close to their heart.
A range of organisations are involved including Giving Northern Ireland, the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland, Fermanagh Trust, Northern Ireland Environment Link, Will to Give, The Youth and Philanthropy Initiative, Arts and Business Northern Ireland and Audiences Northern Ireland.
Andrew McCracken, Chief Executive of the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland said: “The Community Foundation’s experience is that there are many local donors who want to make a difference through contributing to causes that matter to them. Philanthropy Fortnight provides a fantastic opportunity for all of the organisations involved to engage with the growing levels of philanthropy in Northern Ireland and really focus on how best to support local communities.”
The programme for Philanthropy Fortnight features a wide range of topics looking at everything from investing to preserve Northern Ireland’s environment and rich culture and heritage to leaving charitable donations in wills and the question of getting young people involved in philanthropy.
Regional events include a celebration of the Derry-based Acorn Fund, set up by the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland to build on the success of the City of Culture 2013 and a celebration of Fermanagh’s rich tradition of philanthropy by the Fermanagh Trust.
To access the full Philanthropy Fortnight programme go to: www.givingnorthernireland.org