DEDICATED equine charities are to receive almost €500,000 in funding from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine for 2023, almost double the amount allocated this year.
At a briefing in Farmleigh Estate in Dublin on Thursday, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue T.D., announced funding of more than €5.8 million to 99 animal welfare charities nationwide - an increase of more than €2 million (55%) on last year. The funding announcement was made on the second annual Animal Welfare Awareness Day.
Equine charities are in line to receive €471,213 in funding, an increase from €294,250 in 2022. The largest chunk of funding goes to the Longford-based Hungry Horse Outside who will get €140,250.
The Irish Horse Welfare Trust will receive €136,900; ISPCA Equine Rescue Centre Mallow will get €60,175, and there is €50,063 for My Lovely Horse Animal Rescue. (See table for full list of equine charity funding). The Donkey Sanctuary is in line for €379,500.
Commenting on the funding allocation, the Irish Horse Welfare Trust said: “The IHWT is very grateful to Charlie McConalogue for the allocation of animal grant funding to this charity. These funds will allow us to continue to work collaboratively to achieve our joint animal welfare goals in 2023 and to raise awareness of equine welfare.”
Commenting on the record funding, Minister McConalogue said: “Animal welfare is important to all of us in Ireland and is a priority for me and the Government. I am delighted to announce today the highest ever level of funding of €5.8m to animal welfare charities. This money will go to support organisations across the country working to protect and take care of animals. The additional funding provided this year will make a real difference by improving the welfare of animals in Ireland.
“Those who work for animal welfare charities are frontline workers and treat it as a vocation. We are extremely grateful of the tremendous work they do in keeping pets and animals safe. I acknowledge the important work carried out, often in very challenging circumstances, by animal welfare organisations and their dedicated volunteers and staff across Ireland.
“Animal welfare charities play a crucial role in helping animals in need, educating people, and raising public awareness about improving animal welfare.”
Minister of State Pippa Hackett, also at the briefing, added: “This government have made lots of commitments around animal welfare; we are probably the first government to have committed in a large way to addressing welfare issues. One of the commitments was to double the funding to animal welfare bodies and we have one that now in the first half of Government which is wonderful.
“For the first time, we have an animal welfare strategy in the government, we have a standalone animal welfare unit in the Department. We know we have lots to do, we have to enforce legislation better, we understand that, we are working on delivering the commitments.”
Minister of State Martin Heydon said: “I am delighted to be part of my Department’s strong show of support for the work carried out by the many animal welfare organisations across the country. They play an important role in ensuring all animals are cared for and protected. It is work that we can all be proud of. We must also continue to put emphasis on education and the importance of responsibility pet ownership.”
Equine charity funding
Cappanagarrane Horse Rescue €22,350
Forgotten Horses Ireland €19,775
Hungry Horse Outside CLG €140,250
Irish Horse Rehoming Programme €23,550
Irish Horse Welfare Trust €136,900
ISPCA Equine Rescue Centre Mallow €60,175
Leinster Horse and Pony Rescue €18,150
My Lovely Horse Animal Rescue €50,063