Dóchas members are acutely aware that, if they want to achieve their long-term objectives, they need the help of others.
With this in mind, a delegation of Irish NGOs visited "the corridors of power" of the European Union. The trip was facilitated by the European Commission as part of its support for Dóchas' "European Year for Development" project.
The delegation learnt about the roles of the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Irish Permanent Representation and the Council of Ministers.
Irish NGO delegation to the EC: Gary Doyle - Traidlinks; Philip Mudge- Comhlámh; Heydi Foster-Breslin - Misean Cara; Fiona Coyle - Dóchas; Selina Donnelly - Trocaire; Michael Briggs - Christian Ais; Deirdre Kelly - Suas; Mary Faherty -ILCU Foundation; Francis Flood - CBM Ireland; Gemma Kelly - Tearfund Ireland; Maria McLoughlin - GOAL; Isabella Rae - Gorta Self Help Africa; Niamh Cooper - World Vision Ireland; Rebecca O'Halloran -Plan Ireland; Jo-Ann Enright - Action Aid; Clodagh Bryne - Childfund Ireland; Anna Smith - Habitat for Humanity; Helena McNamara -Oxfam Ireland; Hans Zomer - Dóchas
Contrary to expectations, research has found that NGOs can have a high degree of influence in Brussels, particularly in the Commission and the European Parliament and the power of organised civil society - working together through structures like Dóchas and CONCORD - was highlighted by all speakers. Similarly, the MEPs and officials we met also stressed that, if NGOs invest in the necessary expertise, Irish NGOs should be able to access more EU funding.
For more information see our resources on the EU and development cooperation
Irish NGO members with Irish MEPs Brian Hayes (Fine Gael) and Matt McCarthy (Sinn Fein): Fiona Coyle - Dóchas; Maria McLoughlin - GOAL; Gary Doyle - Traidlinks; Isabella Rae - Gorta Self Help Africa; Rebecca O'Halloran - Plan Ireland; Niamh Cooper - World Vision; Deirdre Kelly - Suas; Francis Flood - CBM Ireland; Hans Zomer - Dóchas; Clodagh Byrne - Childfund Ireland; Jo-Ann Enright - Action Aid; Gemma Kelly - Tearfund Ireland; Philip Mudge - Comhlámh; Selina Donnelly - Trocaire; Michael Briggs - Christian Aid; Anna Smith - Habitat for Humanity; Heydi Foster- Breslin - Misean; MEP Brian Hayes - Fine Gael; MEP Matt McCarthy - Sinn Fein; Helena McNamara - Oxfam Ireland; Mary Faherty - ILCU Foundation