Following on the recommendations contained in the report "A Place and a Name" of the late Tánaiste and Victims' Commissioner, John Wilson, the Remembrance Commission was established in 2003 to help address the issue of funding and support for individuals who were affected by the Troubles in this jurisdiction. The Government approved a budget of up to €9 million for this Commission and although it was due to operate until 2006, the Government extended its remit and it formally came to an end on 31 October 2008.
During this period the Remembrance Commission, administered and funded by the Department of Justice and Equality, provided Justice for the Forgottenwith in excess of €1.2 million of funding for their activities. In 2010 a funding award of €7,500 was made under the Reconciliation Fund operated by my Department to the Pat Finucane Centre in the context of their work with Justice for the Forgotten. In total, it is estimated that the group has received almost €2.3 million of State funding since 2000. While the amount allocated to the Reconciliation Fund of my Department has necessarily decreased this year in the context of budgetary restrictions, it remains open to Justice for the Forgotten to apply for assistance towards project work in accordance with the Fund’s stated guidelines. For your information, I have set out these guidelines.
The Department of Justice and Equality, through the Victims of Crime Office, continues to provide support to those victims who require ongoing medical treatment for injuries sustained in bombings and other incidents arising from the conflict in Northern Ireland.
Guidelines for the Reconciliation Fund
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has at its disposal under Subhead F.1. of its budget, a Reconciliation Fund for North-South and Anglo-Irish Co-operation. Its purpose is to assist organisations involved in reconciliation work and efforts to create better understanding between people on the island of Ireland and between Ireland and Britain.
Applications for assistance are considered under the following criteria:
Reconciliation through education; dialogue and culture;
Development and maintenance of meaningful cross-border links;
Promotion of improved Anglo-Irish relations;
Promotion of cross-community and inter-denominational activities;
Promotion of tolerance and acceptance of cultural diversity;
Academic research aimed at promoting reconciliation;
Contribution to political reconciliation.
There will be two funding rounds for the Reconciliation Fund in 2012, with deadlines as follows:
Round 1: Complete applications must be received by close of business on Monday 30 April 2012. Round 2: Complete applications must be received by close of business on Friday 28 September 2012.
HOW TO APPLY
Assistance is provided on a once-off basis, however, organisations may apply for and receive assistance each year. It may be used for a specific project or as a contribution towards general running costs. Funding is generally not available for capital costs, salaries, events/activities that have already taken place, or travel off the island.
The application form should be completed fully, and returned by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. A signed hard copy of the application and relevant accompanying documents should also be sent to the following address:
Reconciliation/Anti-Sectarianism Fund Anglo-Irish Division Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade 80 St. Stephen's Green Dublin 2.
Please note that applications will only be accepted on the current application form which can be found on the DFAT website.
Applications must be accompanied by the following documentation:
A valid tax clearance certificate issued by the Irish Revenue Commissioners, if the amount requested is €10,000 or more — see below for details;
All outstanding reports and/or organisational accounts due for previous grants received — see below for details;
Letters of support from any partner organisations to the proposed project;
A fully completed bank details form, which can be found on the Department's website.
Applications will not be processed until a complete application form with all relevant attachments is received.
Decisions are made by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade on foot of recommendations made by an Interdepartmental Advisory Committee which is drawn from a number of Government Departments. Decisions are reached on the basis of the eligibility criteria outlined above. Other factors taken into account are the level of funding available each year and the number and quality of applications submitted. The Fund aims to ensure that the distribution of funds is as widespread and equitable as possible, based on the merit of individual proposals. The Minister's decision is final.
An organisation which has received assistance from the Reconciliation Fund must send a report and Financial Statement describing how the money has been spent to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade not later than one year after the grant is awarded.
The standard reporting format must be used when submitting reports.
The organisation's annual accounts should be submitted with the report. Where the grant amount exceeded €12,500 these accounts should be externally audited.
The audited financial statements or accounts submitted by the organisation must show the grant as a separate entry, labelled as "Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade — Reconciliation Fund".
Please note that the standard reporting format must be used for all outstanding reports.
Applicants for assistance totalling €10,000 or more in a 12-month period must submit a valid Tax Clearance Certificate with their application. An original copy of the Tax Clearance Certificate, which must be issued by the Irish Revenue Commissioners, should be forwarded to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade upon application to the Fund.
Most groups resident in the State may apply online for a tax clearance certificate. Groups resident in Northern Ireland and in Great Britain should complete Form TC1 and send it to the Irish Revenue Commissioners at email@example.com or fax number:00 353 61 401012. Detailed information is available online at www.revenue.ie.
Please note that the TC1 form is an application form only which should be forwarded directly to the Irish Revenue Commissioners, and not to the Department of Foreign Affairs.