Letter to Irish Times - Survivors

Basic Human Rights Denied as Children, Delayed as Adults


Survivors of Institutional Abuse hold a unique and distinct place in modern Irish History. Generations of Irish Children were sentenced by the courts in this country to “serve” varying degrees of years in one of Ireland’s Industrial schools.

Many of these children were amongst Irelands most vulnerable. They looked for care, for love, for compassion and most importantly basic Human Rights. Many if not all of these, whilst they were in the care of our state, had their basic Human Rights cruelly and brutally taken away from them. Their right to proper education, a safe place to live, proper healthcare and adequate food were denied. All lived in constant psychological fear, all were forcefully beaten and many were raped as children whilst in the care of the state.

When these children eventually reached an age where they could be free of this continued abuse, they left Irelands Industrial Schools with little education, limited life skills, harrowing memories and years of constant denigration ingrained into their minds and bodies. Many went on to litter the many Institutions across Ireland and further afield, struggling to cope with years of brutal mistreatment and the mental Institutions, our streets, homeless shelters and prisons bear testament to this, in a word many became; institutionalised.

Many who had the courage to speak of their experiences were ignored, dismissed as being “liars” and or “trouble makers”. They were kept silenced in some cases for nearly 40 Years. This ruined relationships, broke down marriages and split families, as they could not understand why their loved one was unable to show affection.

To re-iterate, this problem was caused by our state, and their “collective failure to intervene……to come to their rescue”

If you had this beginning in life how would you rate your chances of gaining an education, being able to hold onto relationships, providing a definitive future for you and your loved ones or having equal opportunity for employment? Would you need additional assistance as an adult, still struggling to cope with the pain of a childhood lost, from the very state that caused you so much pain as a child? It is natural as Irish people, who at our very core are naturally generous, understanding and compassionate to appreciate the importance of supporting Survivors and their families as they reach their twilight in life, offering them some form of priority in their basic Rights. Why then do Survivors of Institutional Abuse still suffer through prolonged access to their basic Human Rights, merely being considered as another statistic?

Through our frontline work with Survivors of Institutional Abuse, basic Rights such as Housing, Welfare and Health are being denied and prolonged to Survivors and their family members. Feelings of pain, anguish and mistrust are being re-ignited in Survivors life’s by this basic denial to offer Survivors a Priority of Service in areas they never had an opportunity to develop, due to their disadvantaged beginning. Our average completion rates in reaching a successful conclusion on a Survivors journey over a 90 day period is nearly 75% for the majority of supports needed.

When this same statistic is compared with Housing and Welfare / Health the figure equates to 20% and 32% respectively. This reflects poorly on a state who is failing in its obligation to adequately support the very people they failed to support as children. This is simply not good enough. We must ensure that these are improved and through simple steps, such as a designated contact in each of the Housing and Welfare departments in every corner of Ireland, a published Newsletter 4 times a year, with information on Survivors needs to ensure these contacts are privy to information when dealing with Survivors. Additionally a yearly Forum where people / organisations who have an effect on Survivors lives can share knowledge and best practice.

It is with this in mind that I write this piece, calling on the Government to initiate and the public to support nominating Survivors and their families as a unique citizen Group in Irish Society. This could be cost neutral and ensure that Survivors have the ability to live the remaining years of their lives with some dignity, respect and understanding that we as a people are truly sorry for our Government and states failure to protect our most vulnerable in their time of need.

This time of need has not concluded and we must appreciate this. Until every Survivor (and family member) has the opportunity and priority access to housing, welfare and health, we will continue to fail as a country in our response to the needs of Survivors.

We cannot heal the pain Survivors are faced with every day, but we can help Survivors live with their pain and enjoy some semblance of an adequate living standard.

Whilst I am not a Survivor myself, the supports needed is not an enigma. The History of Survivors lends itself to the creation of many vulnerable individuals and families in Ireland and our diaspora and they all have one unique trait in common. The difficulties many are faced with every day of their lives, is as a direct result of our States involvement in their childhood. Surely that very same state should have the same input into their adulthood only on a more positive and unconditional level.

As the World Health Organisation defines Health and well-being: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.

Our time, as citizens, to adequately support Survivors (and their families) has to come now. No more can we hide behind "what has already been done". Until every Survivor has access to Priority in Welfare, in Health and Housing we will continue to fail them. It is time we all stood up and offered them their basic human Rights and not force them to go through a system that has failed them all their lives, it is the least we owe them.

Micheál Walsh,
Outreach Manager, Waterford & Eastern Region
Right of Place Second Chance for Further information

Notice: Cork Office Closed for two Weeks



To all Survivors, family members.


Please kindly note that our Cork Office is closed from Monday the 20th of August and will re-open on Tuesday the 4th of September.


The Purpose of this is to facilitate Annual Leave for the office staff in Cork. You can still call the office and leave a confidential voicemail, which will be picked up by our Outreach Officer upon her return.


Alternativley, please feel free to contact the Waterford office for anything Urgent. The contact number is 051 - 841 819.


Additionally to this please note that due to this temporary arrangement there may be an unusual delay in responding to your enquiry, however we still envisage a response time as soon as possible.


As always we appreciate your understanding and assistance.

Special Q&A Session


To All,


We are always commited to ensuring Survivors, their families and supporters of Right of Place Second Chance have access to correct information and as such we are holding a special Q & A Session where if you have a burning question you can directly ask it here on our website and it will be answered by one of our team, relevant to their area.

Additionally to this, there has been a number of questions and comments regarding the proposed Monument for Survivors of Institutional Child Abuse that we have answered to individuals, but we will put our responses up also.

It is important that if you have a question, to ask it, as there is only one place you can get direct questions answered.

So to questions raised over the last number of weeks:

  • Why does Right of Place have no designated Outreach Worker for Dublin?

Right of Place does have one Outreach Officer for the Dublin Region, who is based in Waterford City and covers the Entire Eastern Region. Our intention, into the future, is to secure funding to increase this as there is a defined need for one in Dublin. This forms part of our difficulty in responding to queries immediatley as it is often impractical with One office to cover an area that equates to over 2 Million people (albeit Survivor and family numbers are smaller) This forms part of the reason why we respect and appreciate your understanding and patience. We have built a structure, but this structure will only continue to grow.

  • Why does ROP never speak about the work that they do to media?

Right of Place Second Chance has always firmly held onto the belief that we needed to ensure our structures were correct, that there was a demand for the service and that in as many (because we cannot resolve all problems we are presented with) before we championed the work that we do. Sure for open and Transparency we have given all minutes of meetings, taken pictures of events and copied our Annual Report on the website but we believe there is a need to show the work that we do - and we have people who are happy to break the confidentiality. As such over the coming months, we will be promoting the actual work that we do, with stories from Individuals so keep an eye on your local and National Press.

  • Can I become a volunteer?

We would love nothing better! Up to this point we have never used or accessed volunteers outside of the usual few who have always offered it, but we want and need this to change. The overwhelming demand placed on our offices at present means we simply need it. The time it takes to respond to a Survivor and resolve their issue, is getting longer and longer as more people access the services. Our Services are strained and bursting at the seams so a Volunteer policy and document is currently being drawn up with a view to incorporating more volunteers. However this will take time as the sensitive and confidential nature of what we do has to be remembered in any assistance we receive.

  • Why did you agree to get reviewed and what does it mean?

Essentially at present the organisation is going through a Voluntary Review Process to decipher and look at how we act as an organisation. TO look at our structures, our information and to see if we are following Law, best code of Practice and that we are open and Transparent. Whilst this is an ongoing review, I look forward to the Report. We signed up to it simply because we wanted to show what we have done in the 18 months since the New Board took over, and allow a review to be carried out. It will have no direct response to you, who access our service, except for you to know that you are dealing with the best.


Journey To Light - Memorial To Survivors

“I believe that the winning entry, Journey of Light, will act as a testimony to one of the darkest chapters in our State’s history and what we collectively as a society allowed to happen to vulnerable children.  I hope it will serve as a constant reminder that we must never let such horrendous crimes against children happen again and we must strive to protect all of our children,” - Minister for Education and Skills Mr. R Quinn.

Fitting words from Minister Quinn, in reference to the Monument for Survivors of Institutional Abuse.

Garden of Light


Our congratulations first and foremost must go to Hennessy and Associates of Waterford and Studio Negri, Dublin for their design being chosen as the winning design for the Memorial to Honour Survivors of Institutional Child Abuse. Studio Negri are the architects and author of the design and the concept of the Journey to Light Memorial, Hennessy & Associates are the technicians and author of the drawings and visuals.

It is also fitting to congratulate the Committee on an excellent decision and we believe as the monument gains greater understanding, so too will its importance to the generations of Irish men and women who suffered traumatic experiences as children, whilst resident in one of Ireland's Industrial Schools.

We know from speaking to the winning team their passion at what was a very emotive and important piece. It was clear from talking to them their understanding that this had to be a fitting tribute was foremost on their minds and they do not take that responsibility lightly.

Our Outreach Manager had this to say:

"What a fantastic place for me, for my children and for my father to go to remind us as citizens the devastation that we caused to generations of Irish men, women and Children.

The symbolic nature of it all, the story of the children of Lír, cascading through the waterfall. Every fourth stone, protruding with lights on to signify the innocence of one in four children having being abused in this country.

The apology from our Taoiseach engraved onto the wall as a constant reminder to us and our visitors that it was not the childs fault, but a failure on behalf of our state.

Finally the place where it was decided could not be more fitting. An area in Dublin where we go to remember heros of our state – how telling is it that Survivors of Institutional Abuse are (rightfully) placed in the same area.

It is open to the public and yet remains private – an opportunity for those who want to view it and share in its emotion in a gated and secure complex.

I left the unveiling with a greater understanding, a greater appreciation of the work carried out by all connected to it and with a sense of pride knowing that in some small way our country would not be allowed to forget and this monument will ensure we never do."

- Micheál Walsh, Outreach Manager, Waterford & Eastern Region.




Picture: L - Jim Hennessy (Hennessy & Associates, Waterford) Michael Walsh, Chairperson ROP/SC and André Negri (Studio Negri, Dublin) at the Launch of the Design.

Below was the Entry Essay for the Competition, have a read it is fantastic:

Journey of Light Night


The proposed design reinforces the importance of State vigilance in protecting its most fragile members. It is not an attempt to find closure following the revelations of traumatic cases of child sexual abuse in Ireland. The proposal creates a fluid progression between The Garden of Remembrance, which commemorates those who died for the cause of Irish freedom, with a memorial dedicated to the young victims of abuse.

The Garden of Remembrance is composed of a sunken cruciform shape six foot below ground level with limestone walls, a large bronze sculpture of The Children of Lir on a podium and reflection pool along its main axis. The pool has mosaic patterns depicting the Celtic tradition of breaking weapons and casting them in a river to signify the end of hostilities. A cross axis links the forecourt of the Hugh Lane Gallery to the master-plan arrangement of the Rotunda Hospital.

The proposed design is an ordering principle originating where the axes intersect in the centre of the cruciform. The new geometry diverges to create a passageway through the existing podium steps and continue in line with the Irish flag to form a succession of spaces. The composition includes fossilised limestone walls and paving with a clearly defined forecourt entrance and a pedestrian crossing with semi-mature plane trees. This ensures the spirit and intent of the Parnell Square Framework Plan (2005) is respected. A universal design approach is applied to meet the needs of all users and level access is provided throughout the site for the first time.

Central to the design is the element of water which gently cascades over steel plates, symbolising the industrial schools in which many of the abuse cases occurred. The flowing of water represents a healing force for the victims and encourages calmness and contemplation in the viewer. The scale and proportion of the spaces conform to the needs of children and adults.

Journey Of Light - Dust


On behalf of the State and of all citizens of the State, the Government wishes to make a sincere and long overdue apology to the victims of childhood abuse, for our collective failure to intervene, to detect their pain, to come to their rescue.

The State apology will be inscribed in English and Irish at a child’s eye level on the walls, and in Braille on a bronze plaque at the base of the water feature. An aperture placed below the flag directs a shaft of light to the centre of the inter-connecting space, acknowledging the ethereal sculpture above. A bronze bell inscribed on the floor recalls the conclusion of the legend- the ringing of a bell and transformation of the swans back to an aged human form. While the Children of Lir sculpture signifies rebirth and resurrection, it is simultaneously a representation of lost innocence and a vanished childhood.

The proposal compliments the historical setting and centripetally draws in a number of iconic sites within the context. Its auditory, tactile, visual and spatial elements offer a harmonious sensory experience which suggests a movement forward, while deeply inscribed by the knowledge of past events. Above all, it is an ethical link to the sacred ground of the State and a constant reminder that the abuse of our children must never happen again.


Journey of Light Plan

ROP/SC 2011 Audited Financial Accounts


Please click on the below link to view our Audited accounts for 2011.


These are the most recent and most up to date accounts that are available and as advised in the Annual Report they were not published in that because there was a delay in geting them signed off before our Launch.


When you click on this link , the Financial Accounts will open in a seperate window.


Please Click Here to View the Financial Accounts

Code of Governance and ROP/SC

Code of Governence


As part of Right of Place Second Chance continued aim to provide the best supports to Survivors of Institutional Abuse and to constantly appraise the value of our work ROP / SC is taking another unprecedented step amongst Survivors groups.


Right of Place Second Chance has decided to sign up to and consequently be reviewed under the most recent Code of Governence for charities.


At present Right of Place is currently being evaluated to see if we are matching best practices across a varying range of governence and management fundamentals. The main five pillars that underpin this evaluation are as follows;


  1. Principle One: Leading our Organisation
  2. Principle Two: Exercising Control Over our organisation.
  3. Principle Three: Being Transparent and Accountable
  4. Principle Four: Working Effectively
  5. Principle Five: Behaving with Integrity


Once this review has been carried out, the areas that we need to improve upon as an organisation will be published for all to view and we will advise on how we plan to improve them and set an agreed date for their implementation.


It will make interesting reading to see how we ultimatly fare and will help us to re-evaluate the changes that we have made within Right of Place Second Chance since the New Board took over, just over 18 months ago.


Keep an eye on the website for more details as they come.

Fantastic Exhibition of the Arts by Survivors - Take A Look

Right of Place Second Chance Exhibition - "Walk A Mile in My Shoes"

Supporting Talents through Adversity.


Mandy, Waterford City - "How awfully sad yet a testament to a childs inner strength. Unfortunatley not all Survived, shame on us all!"


Recently Held in Waterford City was an exhibition by Survivors and their families of their various types of Art, Craft, Poetry, Prose and General pieces of Craft.

It was simply a wonderful exhibition that helped to showcase the talents that exist amongst Survivors and the comment book that was open for all who viewed it to leave their own comment was heart warming. Comments such as:

Michael, Waterford City - "Beautiful Sense of the Struggle and Triupmh over adversity"

Noelle, Kilkenny - "Praise the Lord, all of your wonderful talents can be seen at last. God Bless All of you"

John, Waterford County - "Very Powerful"

It begins to give you a sense of just how wonderful this exhibition was.

The Purpose of the exhibition was to develop it into a journey. A way of showing us and the wider public, why these pieces of artwork were such a triumph. We created a pathway that brought people into the mind and the psyche of Survivors, from their childhood to many of their empowered states of mind and creativity now.

Here's how we created this:

Step 1: The Childhood:


The CHildhood

The Left part of the Wall is the picture above. It depicted what it was like for many Survivors. How could one possibly expect to learn in an institution when you were not even recognised as a name only a number.

The Below picture was testaments from Survivors of what many of the sentiments that were said to them each day of their schooling. We wanted to showcase this for the wider public to see how demoralising it was for generations of Irish Children. This was to the Right of the Above picture and received a powerful understanding:

Aoife, Waterford City - "Inspiring, simply inspiring - Helped show me a Survivors Childhood"


The Childhood Part 2


STEP 2: The Victim


The Second Part of Our Exhibition came onto our pictures. Many of these pictures were donated by Survivors of Right of Place Second Chance and many were harrowing to say the least. There was a caption associated, "Look into their Eyes". As with any of the pictures regarding the institutions the sheer lack of facilities left a lot of people talking.

Anne from Waterford City - "Very Powerful"

Gerry From Waterford City - "Very Moving"

The Victim


The Above formed only a small part of the exhibition as we wanted to focus the attention on the plight of Survivors but mainly on their achievments despite the adversity they suffered. This was the reason why we then brought people onto their third section, namely;


STEP 3: The Survivor

The Survivor


The Survivor


The Two Pictures above, formed the centre piece of our Exhibition. We wanted to catch the eye of the wider public by having memorable quotes from our Fromer Taoiseach and Former President. The purpose of this was to highlight the fact that this issue was not an isolated incident. It was not something that was carried out by a small section of our society, but a national tragedy that was recognised at the highest levels within our country.

Alan - Kilkenny City - "I was so very moved by your work, my heart goes out to everyone"

We also began to include a number of the additional Art pieces by our Survivors. I am sure you will agree they are fantastic. They began to aid in the national transition in our journey / exhibition to showcasing the talents and showing to our citizens that despite the obsticals they had just witnessed Survivors were Empowered to achieve fantastic pieces of Art and Literature.

Maeve, Unknown - "Fantastic and Heart Rending, I never realised the sheer scale"


STEP 4: Empowerment




The Skill showcased in the Above paintings and craft is simply breathtaking. When one considers the history of Survivors, to see the work that they have built and created is simply fantastic. It is a true testament to the dedication and talents through adversity. The amount of people blown away by some of this artwork was staggering and long may it continue.

Kate, Waterford City - "Great Exhibition"

John, Waterford City - "Empowering!"

Anonymous - "Fantastic, Keep up the Great work that you do"


STEP 4: Empowerment Continued


Empowerment Continued


The Final Picture above was a continuation of our Empowerment. It was a collection of Poetry and Prose by Survivors and their family members. To say I was overwhelmed by the sheer passion and emotion involved in them was an understatement. They told stories, from deep within the soul of Survivors, expressing their inner most thoughts and feelings. The topics were as diverse as, Love, Mothers, The institutions, their childhood, their adulthood, nature etc. The Poetry really was excellent was of a very high standard, indeed one of the comments on our comment book advised this:

Julie, Unknown - "Was very moved by the Power of your poetry. I felt so sad that any of you had to endure what you did and very inspired by the strength you all Show."


So that came to the end of our exhibition. For a Pilot project it proved immensley popular, worthwile and left a lasting impression in so many peoples minds. Some of the additional comments left are as follows;

Pat, Co. Carlow - "Simply Incredible an thank you for letting us see"

Anne, Waterford City - "Very Expressive and Worthwhile"

Mr. Hearn, Unknown - "Good Work"

Terese, Waterford County - "Great Work"

Trish, Unknown - "Keep up the Fantastic Work"

Collette - "Excellent Exhibition"

Eamonn, Waterford - "A beautiful, fantastic way of making sure we never forget"




Two final comment's that was left on our comment book;

Shirley, Waterford City - "The Path is sometimes long, hard and never ending. The trials suffered and conquored make us stronger and more able to face what is to come. The path will end... how we face this ending depends on us... Survivors will face their end, THEIR way"


Anonymous - "Wonderful to see talents promoted that were kept silent for so long. I can really begin to feel and understand the pain, but appreciate the ability to come through it with the support you offer and through the works on display"

I hope you enjoyed looking at the exhibition as I know all those that could attend were very moved by it, and the comments out lined abve which come directy from our comment book help to show this.

Finally I would like to thank All the staff in Right of Place, especially those Support Staff in the Waterford Office for establishing the exhibition, but more importantly to who the exhibition was about - You the Survivor and your family member. For wanting to display your amazing artwork, poetry etc they were simply incredible and for the many hundreds who viewed over the course of the week, you have left a lasting impression. My sincerest thanks to all those that contributed!

Exhibition of Survivors Art/Poetry/Photography/Craft Etc in Waterford Central Library 28/05 - 03/06 2012

Fantastic Exhibition 28th May - 2nd June 2012 - Waterford Central Library


Right of Place Second Chance proudly presents the excellent, emotive and wonderful exhibition "Walk a mile in my Shoes"


After offering our Outreach Service to Survivors over the last year one of the many positives of Survivors is the talents that exist through the Arts. There is fantastic Art, emotional yet eye opening poetry that explores the very soul of Survivors and craft that is natural and produced purely from inate talent. This however for many years in many Survivors was one which they never had the opportunity to showcase or even develop throughout their life, however we hope to have changed this in some small way.

As a result an exhibition of Survivors works was developed to heighten awareness to the general public of the talents that exist among the Survivor population and indeed their family member, additionally to the experience many suffered. Proudly displayed is work by Survivors that allows our citizens see the talents that exist and already the feedback has been excellent.

To all those that contributed, by sending in their pieces of work, we have no need to be thanked, it is us that should be thanking you for allowing us the opportunity to showcase your work. For anybody who has not seen the exhibition I would say if you can make it to Waterford before Saturday evening, please do and celebrate and show solidarity to your fellow Survivor for their fantastic works and their fantastic achievements.

Already we have been asked to develop it nationally and allow others across Ireland to experience the exhibition, so keep your eyes open into the future. Pictures and videos of the exhibition will follow.


Two Survivors Looking to Re-connect


Two Survivors of Institutional Child Abuse are looking for fellow Survivors whom they may have spent time with in the listed Institutions below;


St. Joseph's Industrial School for Boys, Passage West, Co. Cork 1945 - 1949

St. Joseph's Industrial School for Senior Boys, Greenmount, Cork 1949 - 1955


If any of you have any information regarding either yourself or a fellow Survivor who spent time in the above institutions and are interested in re-connecting with former Survivors from the same institution, please feel free to contact any of our offices and we will put you in touch. Alternativly, should you wish please contact our Head office in Cork and ask to speak to Ann Marie Crean directly (Outreach Manager, Cork & Kerry Region) and she will be happy to discuss this in more detail.


Thank you in advance.

Healing Service 27/05/2012 - Waterford City

Healing Service, a joint Project by Right of Place Second Chance and the Lamh Healing Center


As advised earlier this year as part of our commitment to ensuring all Survivors have access to a spiritual Healing service throughout the Year it was decided that a non religious Service would be put on for those who did not want to attend our Annual Mass.


As such after attending the beautiful, powerful and emotional Service created in Cork by the Lamh Healing Center we agreed to bring this service down to Waterford City and allow members of our group (and indeed any person who suffered trauma in their childhood) attend a Service, that they could in their own personal way respect the memory of those who have passed away, but suffered as children.


This particular event is a Pilot Project for our organisation and we hope all who attend can take something away from it. Look forwarding to seeing some of you there.


Joe Duffy, Outreach for the Waterford & Eastern Region and a debate surrounding the Memorial for Survivors


Please click the below link to listen to our Waterford & Eastern Region Outreach Manager's, Micheál Walsh (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) contribution to the deate surrounding the establishment of the Memorial on behalf of Survivors of Institutional Abuse.

Please note the podcast can be downloaded from the below website, under the title "Memorial to Victims of Abuse"

Waterford's Deise AM, Outreach for Waterford & Eastern Region and the recent revelations surrounding Cardinal Brady.


Recently our Outreach Manager for the Waterford & Eastern Region, Micheál Walsh (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) was asked on to discuss the recent revelations surrounding Cardinal Seán Brady on the ever popular Deise AM Programme on WLR FM.


Please click on the below link to listen to the response:

Please note the talk begins on the second half of the show. Press the SECOND play button and it begins on the Third minute.

Minutes of 3 Meetings 30th April - Limerick Right of Place Second Chance

Minutes of 3 Meetings 30th April - Limerick Right of Place Second Chance


Please see below a detailed record of Three meetings which were held by the Limerick Branch of Right of Place Second Chance.


With continued success and enthusiasm we wish each of the new committee members and to thank them for their continued excellent work.


Minutes are detailed below;


Limerick Right of Place/Second Chance

Committee/Members Meeting April 30th 2012

With Alan Kavanagh – PA to Mr Michael Noonan

The Greenhills Hotel

Attendances:      Val Groarke, Martin Woodland, Mary Donovan, Gerry Millar, John Woodland, Paddy Clohessy, Denis Tydings and Alan Kavanagh Personal Assistant to Minister for Finance Michael Noonan.


Draft Statutory Redress Fund Bill – concerns & proposed

amendments by Limerick groups


A meeting was held in The Greenhills Hotel, 30th April 2012 at 2pm with Alan Kavanagh (PA to Mr Michael Noonan)


Val introduced the members of Limerick Right of Place Second Chance to Alan Kavanagh who is the Personal Assistant to Michael Noonan (Minister for Finance).


Alan listened to what our concerns were with regard to the Draft Bill and asked us as a newly formed committee to keep a paper trail as to what information through letters we send to Mr Quinn.


Alan will send all correspondence that he sends to Mr Quinn to Mary (Secretary) updating her of the progress he will be making on our behalf.


Alan proposed to:


  • Sending a letter to Mr Quinns office on our behalf requesting a meeting with our group and Mr Quinn and if Mr Quinn does get back to us and offers a meeting with officials from his department to take the opportunity.
  • He will be informing Mr Noonan of our meeting and will be voicing our concerns and proposed amendments for the Bill.



Amendments proposed by Limerick Right of Place Second Chance

  • Administration costs do not come out of the fund.
  • Children/Grandchildren to be included
  • 5 members (Survivors) and 4 (government members) that we have the overall majority.
  • Funeral/burial costs




Limerick Right of Place/Second Chance

Committee/Members Meeting April 30th 2012

With Wille O’Dea – Windmill Bar

Attendances:      Val Groarke, Martin Woodland, Mary Donovan, Gerry Millar, John Woodland, Denis Tydings, Thomas Meehan, Tom Wall, Noel Conway, Pat Chapman, Denis Crowe, Noel Dunphy, Paddy Clohessy.


Draft Statutory Redress Fund Bill – concerns & proposed





Amendments proposed by Limerick Right of Place Second Chance

  • Administration costs do not come out of the fund.
  • Children/Grandchildren to be included
  • 5 members (survivors) and 4 (government members) that we have the overall majority on the board.
  • Funeral/burial costs

A meeting was held in The Windmill Bar Hotel, 30th April 2012 at 4.30pm with Willie O’Dea.


Val introduced the members of Limerick Right of Place Second Chance to Mr O’Dea.


It was suggested by Mr Willie O’Dea to communicate with the other survivor groups out there informing them of Limerick Right of Place Committee amendments to this bill and get us all to stand together supporting these amendments.


Tom Wall suggested that a copy of the recommendations that are in the Annual Report and the changes that we want amended to be circulated to all members so that they have full knowledge as to what we are doing and what we are fighting for with regards to the Bill.


Willie O’Dea


Willie O’Dea has proposed to:


  • Write to Mr Quinn on our behalf for a meeting with his department and the committee.
  • He will speak to Minister Brendan Smith and get him to ring Val
  • He will voice our proposed amendments to the bill on the floor of the Dail when the bill gets to the house.


Willie O’Dea will send out copies of any communication he makes with regard to the proposals he will be making above to Mary so that we have a paper trail to look back on for future references.


Willie re-iterated that one of the most important amended recommendations should be for the children/grandchildren.


Any Other Business


The group suggested that we need an office in Limerick and because ROPSC is funded by the HSE and there is a building in Limerick with office space empty Mr O’Dea recommended that we get onto the HSE requesting a contact name and that he will make a call on our behalf.




Limerick Right of Place/Second Chance

Committee Meeting April 30th 2012

Attendances:      Michael Walsh (CEO ROSPC) Val Groarke (Out Reach Officer ROSPC) Martin Woodland, Tom Wall (Director), Mary Donovan (Chairperson/Secretary), Gerry Millar (Treasurer),  John Woodland (Asst. Chairperson).

Non Attendance: Francis Traynor (PR ROSPC), Paddy Clohessy (Asst. Treasurer)


Meeting of new committee for Limerick group

Draft Statutory Redress Fund Bill – Amendments to be

submitted by Limerick Group.

Update of meetings today with various Ministers


Amendments proposed by Limerick Right of Place Second Chance

  • Administration costs do not come out of the fund.
  • Children/Grandchildren to be incuded
  • 5 members (Survivors) and 4 (government members) that we have the overall majority on the board.
  • Funeral/burial costs

Director     Mr Tom Wall

Tom began by requesting to the CEO Mr Michael Walsh that while the Bill is in its first draft that he sees no problem to any amendments going through of input by survivors.  The bill is wide open at this time for amendments.  Having the bill at this draft stage is a good thing in sofaras previously we didn’t know what was being agreed or discussed at these meetings that were held in Dublin with Mr Ruairi Quinn and now that there is a Draft means that we have something to go forward with to making changes or amendments for what survivors want included in this Bill.


Tom also suggested that copy of the recommendations that are in the Annual Report and the changes that we want amended to be circulated to all members so that they have full knowledge as to what we are doing and what we are fighting for with regards to the Bill.


CEO            Michael Walsh

Michael welcomed the new committee and wished us much success and congratulated us on the work we have started since its formation last week.


Michael said that in order for ROPSC to be a strong group communication is vital and that we as a group need to be informed of any upcoming meetings whether they are in Cork or Dublin or wherever.  The opinion of the committee is that there is a lack of trust since the old ROP and that trust needs to be built up and this will happen if there is open communication between the different structure within ROPSC with Head Office, Board of Directors and the Committees.  The committee agreed strongly to this because we are the larger support survivor group.


Mary asked him about these meetings that were held in Dublin and that there should be a member of each committee attending with himself and Francis Traynor and Michael informed us that only 2 members of each survivor groups who were in Dublin were invited by Mr Ruairi Quinns office.  Mary suggested that members of different age groups should attend one meeting with Mr Quinn so they can inform him as to how they are struggling and how if this bill is passed in its present form will effect them. Michael Walsh informed the group that an invitation was extended to ROSPC to meet with Officials from Mr Quinn’s office last week.  This will be happening in the next few weeks.  Mr Walsh and Mr Traynor will be attending this meeting and we requested that Tom Wall who is Director of Limerick should also be present.


It was suggested by Mr Willie O’Dea to communicate with the other survivor groups out there informing them of Limerick Right of Place Committee amendments to this bill and get us all to stand together supporting the amendments.  When this was mentioned to Mr Walsh he informed the Committee that Mr Traynor and himself met with other survivor groups last week.  Mary requested the minutes of this meeting and was informed that ROSPC were waiting for the designated members who took these minutes to send them to ROSPC Cork.


Michael asked Mary to type up our core amendments from the Annual Report 2012 which we submitted on 27th March 2012 in Dublin and to also input the extra amendments that we have requested also and send them to ROSPC.


Any Other Business


The committee discussed how we are going to get our members who don’t attend back and Mary has requested from Val the database which he has set up so that a letter can be sent to each of them informing them of the formation of the new Committee and what our aims and objectives are for going forward.


The Committee has requested another meeting of themselves with Francis Traynors attendances at the next one in two weeks.

Next Meeting for Members Wednesday 23rd in Perys Hotel @ 7pm



Recommendations based on 2011 and our need to

Move Survivors in their journey to Empowerment of Opportunities.

Victim to survivor to empowerment.


Our goal and part of our mission statement and values is for us to recognise the importance to aid in Survivors continued journey to healing. Survivors do not want to remain as Survivors but carry on their journey to something more fulfilling and more gratifying. This

needs to be understood by all interested parties who can have an influence over their lives. We need to recognise and understand the past, but focus more on the needs of Survivors as faced now and into the future.


Special Citizen Group

We would call on the government to establish a special task group to determine and to designate Survivors as a Special Citizen Group. We would call on the government to recommend this with the following outlined advantages, which would both be symbolic in

recognising their needs into the future and show a real determination to aid them and their families’ lives. These would be as follows;


  1. 1. Nominated Contact in HSE, Regional office’s and Community Welfare Office’s to deal specifically with Survivors and their representatives. This will then alleviate the misunderstanding of Survivors and their family’s needs and ensure supports

continue for them into the future.


  1. 2. Nominated Contact in Housing and a commitment to include Survivors and their families as a Priority Group with an understanding of their housing needs.


  1. 3. To research needs and supports that Survivors require now and into the future and create a framework that allows for access to the supports that are needed. This also needs to include the statistics of the frontline support that we offer as our Outreach and direct contact with Survivor’s can help to highlight those needs.


  1. 4. Regional Forum (s) Facilitated by the Government to meet on a yearly basis. This would then include the nominated contact in the HSE Regional offices, the nominated CWO in each region and a member of the housing department in each

City / county council. The purpose of this would be to facilitate greater awareness and understanding of Survivors needs.

Inclusion of family members in future supports.

One of the few pieces of research by the National Suicide Research Foundation, noted the interaction with family members to be a key factor in ensuring Survivors do not commit suicide. It is therefore unfortunate that the Government has decided to remove family

members from access to the Trust Fund, and indeed future supports, despite the fact that the organisation that they fund can show the importance of Family members in Survivors lives. It is therefore essential that the additional supports we are calling on the government to make, include family members as from our frontline work it is clear to see the inter-generational effect Institutional abuse has had on many families in Ireland.


Inclusion of people who have haven’t yet come forward for Redress

One of the most common quotes from Survivors is They didn’t listen to me for 30-40 years and told me I was a liar, why would I talk about it know. There is still a nominal number of Survivors out there who have not yet got access to the RIRB for many reasons and it is both inequitable and unreasonable to accept that they can now be forgotten. The issue surrounding Institutional abuse took a long time to be truly understood, it would therefore be important that any Survivor who still has to come forward is afforded the opportunity to do so. To truly understand the history of Survivors, the need to allow Survivors to come forward when they feel it is necessary is crucial. Additionally to this when one looks at the numbers and percentage of those who have come forward as a late redress application it is clear to see the small numbers we are discussing. For instance there has only been 24 out of our 5,393 contacts have been assistance in coming forward to go to the Residential Institutions Redress Board (Late Applications). In other words, only 0.5%, therefore dispelling the fear that the supports would be stretched too thin.


Trust fund is to be supplemented on a continued basis

As the additional contribution (€110 million) by the 18 Religious congregations, is to be used as a Statutory Trust fund to aid in Survivors lives it is important that this is not the end of the supports that are needed into the future. If the Fund is used as effectively as it can be, there is no guarantee that it will outlive every Survivor and we call on the Government to make sure that every Survivor has access to it for as long as they are alive. To this we would then call on the Government to supplement the Trust fund on a continued and yearly basis to make sure it does not become an ending. We see the Trust fund as a beginning of a new era in the advancement of Survivors lives and not an ending.


Establishment of a national day of remembrance

There is still no recognition to Survivors in this country despite the role that our elected representatives had in the challenges and pain many children in this country suffered. We commemorate many international events of denial of human rights and yet we still do not recognise or commemorate our own tragedy.  We would therefore call on the government to nominate a day in our calendar year which is used to commemorate deceased Survivors of Institutional abuse and make sure we are recognising the pain and suffering of Survivors. It would also ensure that it lifts the stigma that was attached to Institutional abuse and be a symbolic remembrance of our national understanding.



The proposed recommendations that Limerick Right of Place Second Chance want added to the Statutory Redress Fund Bill are:

  • Funeral/burial expenses
  • That 5 members of survivor members be on the board and 4 Government Members
  • Children/Grandchildren
  • Cost of Administration does not come out of this Fund since it was the State that created this situation.
  • Health recommendations are already in place for our members.





IMPORTANT - New Info Regarding Trust Fund


Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Bill 2012 as initiated and Explanatory Memorandum


Bill entitled an Act to provide for the establishment of a body to support the needs of former residents to be known as Bord an Chiste Reachtúil Foras Cónaithe or in the English language, the Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Board, and to define its functions; to provide for the making of contributions by certain persons; to amend the Residential Institutions Redress Act 2002; to amend the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse (Amendment) Act 2005; and to provide for related matters


We were this morning advised that the First Draft of the Trust Fund, or as it is officially to be known "Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Bill".

Please view the information as contained within it as it is the first time that some concrete details of the ways in which it hopes to Support Survivors can be seen. Right of Place Second Chance will be issuing a Press Release on the contents, so please feel free to comment and ask any questions that you have.

It is imperative that questions are asked and correct answers are got. Please feel free to ask any questions and we will answer them for you, or find out the answers for you.

Please click here to view the Bill (PDF)

(Updated) Right of Place Second Chance Annual Report 2012

Annual Report 2012


*Please Scroll down to the Bottom of the page to view a copy of the Report

On the 27th March 2012, Right of Place took the unprecedented step amongst Survivor Groups in launching an Annual Report.


Their was many facets as to why the Report was launched and probably the most important of them was our recommendations section where we have called on the Government to offer further supports for Survivors and their families into the future.


We looked at what the major concerns were from our 5,393 contacts over the last year to formulate these recommendations that would in some shape aid in the advancement of Survivors lives. Indeed this is our continued aim, as the Report was entitled;

"Moving on, From Victim to Survivor, to Empowerment and Opportunity"


We hope you enjoy looking through the Annual Report and to re-iterate this will be an Annual Event in our constant quest to advance Survivors lives, additionally to offering a platform for Survivors to see the work being carried out and the important role we play in Survivors lives.


Annual Report

Annual Report



Annual Report 2012


Annual Report Cover


Please Click Here to view the copy of our Annual Report.


Annual Report - Click Here