The Shame of Ireland

The Shame of Ireland

29 May, 2018 - Minister Bruton publishes Caranua eligibility review

The Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton T.D. today (Tuesday 29th of May) published the Caranua Eligibility Review, following approval from Cabinet. 

Caranua is the independent Statutory Body responsible for providing for services for people who, as children, experienced abuse in residential institutions in Ireland. It caters for people who have already received settlements, Redress Board or Court awards and has supported a diverse range of needs. 

Caranua’s role is to use contributions from religious congregations to fund approved services to support survivors' needs. These services include health and personal social services, educational services and housing services. To date, Caranua has made payments to 5068 individuals and had paid out for services worth some €72.5 million on the following services: 

-        Health                            €19.7m (27%)

-        Housing                         €51.3m (71%)

-        Education                      €1.3m (1.8%)

-        Exceptional needs        €0.17m (0.2%)

Caranua has added additional specific services within these overall categories in response to the expressed needs of the survivors. 

Given that the maximum resource available to the Fund is €110m, a Review was undertaken by the Department of Education and Skills to determine the implications of extending the eligibility criteria in the event that there was going to be an underspend of the Fund by the people currently eligible to apply to it. 

This Review was approved by government today and is now being published. The Review shows that the monies will be fully spent for the group of survivors whom the fund was originally targeted.  It is clear that the fund is not going to be undersubscribed and therefore will continue to be used for the benefit of those survivors. Caranua is currently engaging proactively with survivors and their representative groups to ensure that the remaining funds reach as many of those survivors as possible.  

A number of survivors have sought the holding of a series of meetings which would serve as a forum for former residents and others with close personal involvement to reflect on their experiences, the State’s response to the issue of institutional abuse and to make any recommendations they wish to make.  

The Minister supports this proposal and wishes to facilitate consultations with survivors built around survivors’ experiences of the measures that the State put in place following the realisation of the systemic abuse that occurred in residential institutions. This consultation will be managed through an external facilitator.  

We would like to get the views of survivors on how that consultation process should proceed. To give your views, a short survey form can be accessed at A freefone service will be operational later in the week which will be operated by Barnardos and allow people to give their views over the phone.  

The Minister will also convene an interdepartmental committee to examine how existing mainstream State services can best meet the needs of survivors into the future. This committee will include representatives from the Department of Education and Skills, Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Department of Justice and Equality and the Department of Health and will hold its first meeting in the near future.  

Notes for editor 

A Dáil Private Members’ motion was passed in 2017, with the support of the government, calling for a number of improvements to be made to Caranua. Since that motion passed a number of positive developments have taken place. 

  • Caranua is now publishing statistics on the feedback they receive from survivors and for 2017, there was a 90% satisfaction rate. More recent statistics published on the Caranua website show that 95% of the feedback between January and March of this year was positive.
  • In 2016, following consultation with survivors, the Board changed their criteria to include household goods and funeral expenses.  This was in response to what survivors were calling for on how the fund should be utilised.
  • As well as having to comply with the Code of Practice for the Governance for State Bodies, Caranua is in process of implementing the following measures: 

-        It is reviewing its customer charter;

-        It is making data available on feedback and complaints received;

-        It is increasing the level of face-to-face engagement with applicants.

         It is doing this through scheduled face-to-face meetings in various venues in Dublin, in the regions and in the UK.

-       It is enhancing the level of statistics it provides to the Department and to the public on waiting times for processing

        and communicating decisions. 

Source -

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Survey - Public Discussions For Former Residents of Residential Institutions.

The department agreed consultation talks with me for survivors on 17 November 2017 last and since then they have been reneging on holding these talks. So why are they putting up this survey? Because they are hoping that very little will respond or say no. RISN advises survivors to not respond to this survey and instead support survivors by emailing stating that you the department made agreement with William Gorry and should adhere to this agreement with him. Survivors are for too long being re-abused and dis-stressed by the Minister, his department and Caranua with the treatment that has and is been given to survivors.  We must at this stage be together as RISN says “Better Together” and let them know that we will not be judged, spoken about the way we have been and treated in appallling way and that we are not taking any more. RISN is there for survivors, survivor led and will get results if our fellow survivor be with us. we have. In the Eligibility review see the amount Caranua have spend on miliions on like office, Staff etc that is disgraceful and not acceptable. The millions should have been spend on survivors out of the fund. RISN WOULD LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU.  Email or call RISN on 085-2574737. LET BE “Better Together” contact us please.

Thanks Rob. Will Read Survey. Just Need Do So When Can Read In No Rush.

Administrative costs for Caranua to the end of December 2017 were €7.45m meaning that total expenditure had reached €80 million with some €30 million potentially available at that point.

€7.45M administrative cost by Caranua from fund. What a disgrace. This should have been used for survivors as what it was meant for. Let Be together and as RISN says “Better Together”. Let RISN hear you views on eligibility review or anything regarding Caranua, appeals or experiences with applications.  RISN is here to get better results for survivors led by survivors. Please contact us email or call us on 085-2574737 Confidentiality and privacy reassured..

Hi All, I was refused my appeal by the appeals officer, I had taken the appeal re discrimination on the grounds that some survivors received Hugh sums of money and the reset of us are being expected to sign into their new guideline and be subject to a limit of €15,000 if we opt-in. They wouldn't even help with housing in the appeal and I was refused on the grounds that I wasn't an exceptional need case. No secure housing, have a disabled lad, in need of may things that I cannot ever afford and I will only get them if I op-in. The way were are being treated is shocking and amounts to bullying and our government is allowing these people to take all the money given to survivors through high wages, paying for rent of offices and all their trips that amount to nothing. In all the years I have been a survivor I have never been contact by one person to even see how I am doing. 

I am a survivor living in the UK, I successfully applied for this £12,000 or I believe €15,000, to date I have received a number of goods from my home, I have also had to pay in excess of £1000 for counselling out of my own pocket well from the fund itself, because getting an appointment with the counsellor/therapist is nearly impossible on the NHS, I am currently waiting to have cataracts removed from my eyes again because I cannot get an appointment here in the UK it could cost me 3 to £4000 from the money which I received from this font, so really at the end of the day I'm simply paying money to jump queues to try to improve my own well-being, which I suspect that if I lived in Ireland I could get this done free of charge, this is unfair, I have approximately £6000 of the balance to spend from this font, given that I will have to pay for my own cataract operations and will require continuing counselling/psychotherapy for many years to come or so I'm told it would appear that I have to pay this from the money I received from the fund, can anyone advise, while I'm grateful for the funding I think it's a little unfair to use the money to pay all my medical costs I would appreciate any feedback from anyone, thank you a survivor living in the UK

Yawn Yawn Yawn.

Perhaps someone should sent mr bruton this web address, or perhaps we could find some way through media to get our own survey as to the satisfaction rating, or even apply to caranua under the foi.

Great comment shep

Any IRISH survivors Ireland, Northern Ireland, Uk, or anywhere please contact RISN in relation to winding down of services from 1st August next. Also the survey and consultation talks to be held that was agreed by Department of education to me. We want hear how you feel, your concerns, experiences with address and in any way we can help you.  Please email or call us +353 (0) 85  2574737 we would love to hear from you soon.




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