Minister Katherine Zappone launches grant scheme to support commemorative events related to Mother and Child Institutions and County Homes

By March 7, 2020 No Comments

Scheme now open to applications for funding

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone, has today announced the launch of a grant scheme to support commemorative events for former residents of Mother and Child Institutions and those who had comparable experiences in County Homes.  This new grant scheme will provide financial assistance to survivor led advocacy groups for the purpose of organising and running commemorative events.

Commemoration does not just look to the past but can be an active process with real benefits for people today. In developing this grant scheme the Department of Children and Youth Affairs wishes to support survivor centred advocacy organisations in commemorating their experiences in a way of their own choosing that responds to the specific needs of their communities.

Minister Zappone stated: “I am delighted to launch this scheme today. This grant funding supports local community based memorialisation and promotes a survivor centred approach in a way which enhances the agency and capacity of former residents to commemorate their lived experiences on their own terms.

The scheme was developed in response to the recommendations which emerged from the work of Collaborative Forum of Former Residents of Mother and Baby Homes.

Minister Zappone added: “This scheme is further positive evidence of what can be achieved by parties working together with a common purpose and I want to thank the members of the Collaborative Forum for their contribution to the development of this important measure.”

Commemorative events may have a focus on honouring and restoring dignity to those who died while resident in these institutions, or celebrating and remembering with those who have lived experiences of these institutions.  The importance and value of commemoration is recognised in the role such activities play in enabling personal stories to be told and in facilitating healing by enhancing public awareness and understanding. 

Funding of €50,000 has been ring-fenced for this scheme for 2020 and organisations can apply for up to €2,500 per event to support their commemorative activities. Funding is available to survivor-led organisations, representing one or more of the named institutions currently being investigated by the statutory Commission of Investigation. In designing the scheme, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs is aware that many former residents now live outside of Ireland and we have ensured that advocacy organisations representing the diaspora are eligible to apply for funding for events in their resident countries. 

The grant scheme is now open and taking applications.

Any person with queries regarding the scheme should contact the Department of Children and Youth Affairs by e-mail: or by telephone: +353-1-6473200.