Projects Supporting Women, Travellers, and Migrants Among Eleven Awardees of The €10 Million Equality Fund at Rethink Ireland

New Liberty Hall Mural Declares that Equality is a Right for All and Celebrates 11 Fund Awardees

The Equality Fund Awardees Announced by Rethink Ireland. Liberty Hall Mural Declares that Equality is a Right for All and Celebrates 11 Fund Awardees. Pictured at the Equality Fund announcement and mural unveiling are Minister Joe O’Brien TD, Minister of State for Community Development and Charities and Deirdre Mortell CEO, Rethink Ireland. Pic: Marc O'Sullivan

Eleven civil society groups throughout Ireland have been awarded grants through the Equality fund. The groups’ projects advance equality for LGBTI+ communities, migrants, people with intellectual disabilities, Travellers, sex workers, women survivors of addiction and domestic sexual violence, and organisations that combat racism and hate in Ireland. 

Rethink Ireland also announced today a record expansion of The Equality Fund in Ireland from €3 million to €10 million over 5 years. The funding comes from The Peter Kinney and Lisa Sandquist Foundation and is being matched by the Department of Rural and Community Development and the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth via the Dormant Accounts Fund.

Today a giant art installation was revealed on Liberty Hall, featuring the real-life images of:

Mariaam Bhatti, The Great Care Co-op (who was present at the launch)
Tracey Reilly, Pavee Point
Dermot Lowndes, The National Platform of Self Advocates 

Mariaam Bhatti, who features on the Liberty Hall art installation, is the South African-born Co-Founder of the social enterprise, The Great Care Co-Op. The Co-Op is one of the eleven projects receiving funding from The Equality Fund.

Based in Dalkey, County Dublin, the social enterprise is a non-profit, carer-owned co-op that puts clients’ and workers’ rights front and center. Mariaam hopes that the model of the Great Care Co-op will become a template for home care in Ireland.

Today’s announcement coincides with:

  • The unveiling of a mural on SIPTU’s Liberty Hall in Dublin this morning
  • The launch of a new website,
  • The release of eleven short films on The Equality Fund awardees to be aired on The documentaries are the work of award-winning Director Aoife Kelleher and Producer Hugh Rodgers.

Minister Joe O’Brien TD, Minister of State for Community Development and Charities said: “Today’s announcement is brilliant news for the organisations being awarded, but more than that, it is a positive signal that Irish people have a strong sense of the importance of equality. I am looking forward to seeing how The Equality Fund will support these Awardees over the coming years, so that communities can identify their own needs and interests and be integral to creating positive change.”

A spokesperson for The Peter Kinney and Lisa Sandquist Foundation said: “The Equality Fund strives to give scale to the voices and work of marginalised communities. We believe that solutions to combat systemic inequalities must come from the affected communities themselves. All of the awardees have shown commitment to furthering equality in their respective communities.”

Deirdre Mortell, CEO of Rethink Ireland said: “The Equality Fund is one of the most dynamic strands of Rethink Ireland’s philanthropic partnerships. We are proud and delighted to partner with the Peter Kinney and Lisa Sandquist Foundation on this growing fund. As a modern democracy, Ireland is evolving and our society must keep up with changes. This means making sure that no-one slips through the cracks and that there are structural supports in place for people who are marginalised in our society.”

Dr Michael Barron, Head of The Equality Fund said: “We are proud to partner with such experienced and dynamic community groups who work tirelessly within marginalised communities. At The Equality Fund, we know that we must tackle our most ingrained injustices and inequalities and that communities most impacted by such injustices are the best place to drive the solutions. This work needs long-term vision, commitment, collaboration and ultimately a genuine shift in power. This is what our partner organisations provide to Irish society and we are honoured to add our support to their work.” 

This Equality Fund supports civil society groups working with marginalised women, ethnic minority and migrant people, Traveller and Roma communities, people living in poverty, people with disabilities and LGBTI+ people.