iCare chairperson describes funding refusal as “soul destroying”

The fallout continues today following confirmation at the weekend that of €16 million in funding announced for young people with disabilities under the Ability Programme, none of it has gone to Donegal.

Indeed, a graphic produced by iCare in Inishowen shows that there is one project north of the Dublin Galway line, and that is in Roscommon.

The bulk of the funded projects in the Dublin area.

Angela Tourish is Chair of iCare - She told Greg Hughes on today's Nine til Noon Show that they wanted to provide supports to young people after they leave school, but that plan has now been severely compromised..............

Statement issued by iCare this morning -

RE: Map of Ireland that has been viewed by over 85,000 people so far on our Facebook page. 


The Bluestack Special Needs Foundation , iCARE (Inishowen Children's Autism Related Education Limited) & Extern all jointly submitted a funding application for the Ability Programme in January 2018. We were extremely disappointed to be turned down for this funding, but more disappointed when we examined what areas through Ireland received funding. Please see attached a map that the iCARE manager designed of the locations where organisations were successful. We would like to state that we do not think any of these organisations are less deserving than us, but we do believe that the allocation is not spread out throughout Ireland fairly.


Minister Finian McGrath states on his video via his Facebook page that "Last Friday we announced €16 million under this Ability Programme, Minister regina Doherty and myself and this money is to be distributed towards community groups all over the country and thats a €16 million for 2600 young people between 15 and 29 years of age. It s avery important step but it is also pointing out again to say to people with disabilities you're involved your included and I am doing my best as minister of state in relation to this particular issue".


Information on the Ability programme


"The Ability Programme will provide supports to over 2,600 young people with disabilities aged between 15 and 29 years old.

The focus of the Programme is on projects aimed at young people with disabilities and is designed to assist in their transition from school to further education, training and employment. The Programme will promote employment prospects and meaningful social roles for young people with disabilities and in particular, young people who are distant from the labour market, using a range of person-centered supports". (Pobal.ie)




An interesting visual of the 16 million euro allocated under the Ability Programme for young people with disabilities. Are there no young people with disabilities North of Dublin or Galway? We have lots of young people accessing iCARE & The Bluestack Special Needs Foundation and are in urgent need of funding, any minister with any suggestions please contact us ASAP!


The amount of comments, shares and wide spread support we are receiving is phenomenal. If you would like further comments, please contact myself to arrange an interview.






Liam Gill

Centre Manager