News & Events

Caranua Board minutes 9th August 2018

We are happy to publish the minutes of our Board meetings so that Board activities and decisions are accountable. There is always a delay between the meeting held and the publication of the minutes.  This is because the minutes must be approved before they can be published.  Minutes are approved at the meeting after the meeting they are a record of.  For example, if a Board meeting is held in March and the next meeting is held in April, the minutes of the March meeting will not be on the website until after the April meeting.

Present: David O’Callaghan, Tom Daly, Damian Casey, Katherine Finn, Frances Harrington, Patricia Carey.


Apologies:    Francis Treanor, Caitriona Ni Mhurchu
In attendance: Rachel Downes, Saragh Fitzpatrick (Secretary), Sinead Dwyer


Item Discussion Decision




1.    Quorum, Apologies and Conflicts of Interest Declarations The Chair noted that there was a quorum present and that apologies had been

received from one member who was unable to attend.

No member had declared an interest in the Agenda.

2.    Minutes Minutes of the last Board meeting were agreed.



Proposed by Patricia Carey and seconded by Tom Daly


3.    Matters Arising not on the Agenda All action points were agreed as appearing on the agenda for this meeting.


4.    Report on Applications and Spend ·        The CEO presented a report on the number of applications received to date and a statistical analysis in relation to those applications in relation to the influx of applications since the announcement of the cessation date.

·        The call line operators and post handling team are under severe pressure, busy but managing.

·        The additional advisors in place have put pressure on administration and finance teams, but this is moving applications through and reducing waiting times for survivors.

·        In relation to those submitting applications after cessation, it is important to communicate that the cessation date has passed. A record is being maintained of all late received applications, and linkages to other organisations who may accept referrals. The Board reviewed the letter being sent to applicants submitting applications after the cessation date, with some wording clarifications in the second paragraph.


·        The CEO also presented a Finance report, with details of the financial position at the end of last month. It will be important to maintain a detailed running forecast, through Audit and Risk Committee and reporting to the Board, of the remaining fund and statistics in relation to the applications on hand.


·        A subcommittee will be set up to review the staffing management and general operations into the wind down of the organisation. Patricia Carey volunteered to work on this subcommittee, as she has vast experience with change management.























Senior Management Team will discuss and scope out terms of reference of this subcommittee into Q4 2018.


5.    Executive Report The Director of Services presented the Executive Report as it related to Management team and staff activity:


·         There have been some recent resignations, including the Head of Communications, however, there has also been some recruitment activity, due to the sanction of additional posts and backfill of resigned posts:

o    Finance Executive (recruitment underway)

o    Two administrative staff (filled through the temporary clerical officer panel)

o    Head of Communications

o    Three application advisors. Recruitment has been completed and there is now a panel in place from which future vacancies can be filled.


·         We recently received a loan of several pieces of art from the state art collection for display in our offices. These pieces will be returned to OPW when the organisation eventually winds down.


Appeals update




Additional Board members

·         The Department of Education and Skills have produced an application pack and we expect that the process will commence shortly.


Communications Update

·         There continues to be an active process of outreach and engagement by Caranua staff, in relation to helping survivors with applications, particularly those with complex needs. Caranua offered one to one meetings at Caranua offices, which was availed of by 3 applicants in July. In addition, following a collaborative process with the Christine Buckley Centre, application advisors facilitated 11 one to one meetings in June and July.   This will be an ongoing collaborative project. Caranua’s outreach programme in the Deaf Village was continued in July, where advisors meet with applicants in a private and confidential setting with a sign language interpreter available.




Annual Report

·         Draft copy annual report reviewed by the Board, and subject to 2 minor amendments, is approved for submission to the Department of Education & Skills.



Finance Report

·         Size of statutory fund – the amount received to date by Caranua from congregations is €102,973,284.27. On review of this amount from details provided by the Department of Education and Skills, it became clear this was inclusive of interest of €1.38 million.


·         The Board approved payment for the outstanding invoices for counselling services with Towards Healing. As previously discussed this Memorandum of Understanding between Caranua and TH is no longer in place.


·         The CEO and DOF held a meeting with Fexco Corporate Services in relation to their continued service provision. It was agreed that we would implement quarterly conference call meetings going forward.





Staffing levels to be monitored by Senior Management Team.






















Outreach and engagement work to continue.












CEO will forward report to the DES after amendments.




Financial report to be updated to reflect this restatement.




DOF will arrange payment.





6.    Governance Matters No agenda items relating to Governance Matters for this Board meeting.



7.    Finance & Risk Matters There has been no Audit and Risk committee meeting since the last Board meeting. Chair of ARC and Director of Finance updated the Board in relation to the following items:

·         GDPR audit – Internal Auditors RSM UK have conducted an audit of GDPR compliance by Caranua, and early indications, pending receipt of draft report, are that Caranua are in compliance with the legislation and have performed well in comparison to other organisations reviewed by RSM UK.

·         C&AG audit – the audit of 2017 financial statements will take place ahead of schedule, and is due to commence in September 2018.

·         The financial report on current fund valuation and spend in the month of June 2018 was presented to the Board for review.


8.    Correspondence & PQs There was some press coverage around cessation.   There was some pressure on call line operators in relation to the fact that there was a misconception in some quarters that Caranua were closing completely rather than only to new applications. Once this was corrected and handled, the forecasted activity proved to be very accurate.


9.    A.O.B. No other business was identified.


10. Next meeting The date for the next meeting was agreed as 20th September, with an Audit and Risk Committee meeting to be held on 17th September.

The meeting concluded at 12pm.


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