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Irish billionaire’s giving falls

Irish billionaire’s giving falls

The charitable vehicle of Irish billionaire Denis O’Brien made donations of €4.9 million last year, down from €5.5 million the year before.

The Iris O’Brien Foundation, based in the Dublin headquarters of Mr O’Brien’s Communicorp company, distributes grants in and overseas. Mr O’Brien owns many businesses in and the international telecom Digicel and is listed among the World’s Top 200 Billionaires.

SEE ALSO: O’Brien foundation gave €5.5 million last year

The accounts for 2017 show that for domestic charities fell considerably in the last year, with a drop from over €3 million to €1.8 million. Overseas grew from €2.3 million to €2.7 million.

Overseas, Mr O’Brien has a long association with projects in the Caribbean, particularly Haiti. In 201 he described his views on philanthropy by saying: “to the world in which I am living and the needs of those not merely less fortunate than me, but whose ability to live fulfilling and dignified lives have been compromised by the circumstances in which their lives have begun.”

The Foundation supports human rights, helps people affected by disasters, supports people with disability, educational causes and promotes art.

In the past Mr O’Brien has also supported the promotion of philanthropy with donations to Philanthropy Ireland. The billionaire has also reputedly paid the salary of Ireland’s international soccer manager.

Mr O’Brien’s business picks up the cost of administrating the Foundation.

Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Research massive growth in giving.

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