Organisation:All Together in Dignity Ireland- ATD Fourth WorldCategory:Medium OrganisationsCharity Reg no. :200721311. Tell us about the issue(s) this organisation is tackling and why it's important
2. How does your organisation go about tackling these issues?
- Why was the organisation set up? What is it trying to change or do? Why is it important to do this? All Together in Dignity – ATD Fourth World is an international human-rights movement that works through grass-roots projects in partnership with people living in poverty. In Ireland, public spending cuts have left their mark on public services, resulting in many people falling through the gaps. Poverty is multidimensional, and financial inequality is a key feature. However, there are other dimensions, such as ill health, isolation, chronic loneliness and barriers to education and decent work, often leading people to feel stigmatised because of their circumstances. ATD attempts to alleviate these effects. People in poverty rarely participate in conversations on how to find solutions to this problem. ATD aims to provide a place where people feel their voice is heard.
3. Tell us about a case where the organisation has made a positive difference.
- Explain your organisation's approach to solving the issues you identified in your previous answer. If it has had to adapt its activities in response to COVID-19, how did it do this? Family visits and support to those with an experience of poverty are central to ATD’s work, often supporting people through periods of crisis and difficulty. ATD had to reduce family vists throughout the lockdown. According to Covid- 19 guidelines, ATD could gradually return to these visits first only speaking outside and using face coverings. ATD also has several ongoing projects such as Lockdown Liberties, a writing project. ATD also works with community activists to further policy and structural changes. ATD has recently carried out a workshop conducted by community activists over zoom with social work students in Trinity College to bring a greater awareness of how social workers are perceived within disadvantaged communities and discuss how to make their work more person- centered.
4. What has the overall impact of this work been and how do you measure it?
- This is your chance to talk about impact in qualitative terms. Provide a case study to illustrate the impact of the organisation’s work. We will accept anonymous case studies if you need to protect the identity of a service user or individuals under 18 years of age. You can include a quote or endorsement if you wish.One community activist has recently taken part in the aforementioned social work module, which had the goal of changing the nature of social work in Ireland today. This took place with over 50 social work students on zoom. This was a great achievement for this activist, as when first introduced to ATD he had very low confidence and struggled to speak about himself. Through his involvement with ATD he greatly developed his self- esteem and could easily articulate his experiences. The social work training module was one of many occasions where this activist played a leading role in presenting to a large group of people. The activist also gains the knowledge that they have a valuable role to play in creating change in society. “Presenting today was really important. I spoke out and I feel like it touched the students’ heart strings. I feel it really did and it will have a wider impact.” This module was a positive experience on both sides as the social work class and the professors were very receptive to what the activists had to say. It was an opportunity to have respectful, open, dialogue with two groups who do not often converse in this way. “Their stories really made me realise the importance of how social workers use language and how kindness, compassion and respect should always be at the forefront of how we interact with each individual we come in contact with.”-Trinity student It is hoped that this will lead to long term collaboration with Trinity College.
5. What makes your organisation special?
- How would you describe the overall impact of your organisation’s work? What measures do you use to know if you have been successful at achieving your goals? How do you know what to improve or change in your work? Please include as much evidence as possible to demonstrate your impact. ATD provides significant support to those experiencing persistent poverty. It encourages community participation among those who may feel marginalised from their community. It creates a safe, non- judgemental space where people can build relationships with others who may have similar life experiences. ATD measures its impact in a number of ways. It aims to constantly grow its members and continually reach out to an increasing number of families and individuals, which is measured through an increasing contact list. It measures its impact through its policy efforts. For example ATD is a member of the #addthe10th alliance which is working to add socio- economic discrimination as the tenth ground under the Equal Status Act. Mainly ATD measures its impact through the difference seen in its members. Many ATD members find great improvements to their confidence, self- esteem, and physical and mental well- being through their involvement with ATD. Many projects have tangible and physical outputs which participants can take pride and ownership in. The Lockdown Liberties writing project resulted in a physical book which will be launched on October 27th. In promotion of the #addthe10thalliance ATD conducted a series of summer art workshops where participants could creatively depict what socio- economic discrimination meant to them. This resulted in a number of clay artworks which will be on display in an exhibition from the 27th to the 31st of October.
6. How can the public support your work?
- What is the organisation’s unique selling-point? What makes the organisation different from others working in the same field/area?ATD recognises that those experiencing poverty are often left out of the conversation in finding solutions for poverty. ATD recognises those with direct lived experience as the true experts of poverty. As a result, we take a truly participative approach to our work, putting the voice of the lived experience central to everything that is carried out at ATD. Encouraging active involvement of those with lived experience is an extension of the democratic process and ATD believes that this is the best way to create meaningful change that will tangibly effect people’s lives in the long term. ATD takes a holistic approach to tackling poverty and works to recognise the talents, skills and contributions of those who experience poverty, rather than just viewing people as passive victims.
7. Describe how your organisation is transparent and accountable
- Do you need volunteers? Do you fundraise? Can the public share your story? Give them a call to action.Much of the work carried out by ATD is done by volunteers alongside paid staff. ATD is often looking to recruit new volunteers for a short or long term basis. The public can also support ATD’s work through donations through the website at https://www.atdireland.ie/wp/donate/. The public can show support to events such as the exhbition to display outcomes of Lockdown Liberties and art workshops which will take place in the EPIC centre in Dublin from the 27th to the 31st of October.
- For example, do you publish your annual accounts online? Are you compliant with the Charities Regulator's Charities Governance Code? Do you use the Charities Regulator’s Fundraising Principles?Yes we are in compliance with the Charity Governance Code, have annual audits, quarterly board of directors meeting and publicly display all on the website www.atdireland.ie