BirdWatch Ireland has been working hard over the last 18 months to address the issues identified as a result of both the correspondence with the Charities Regulator (started in March 2021) and the Charities Regulator’s Investigation (launched in August 2021), with the conclusions of the latter contained in the Report.
BirdWatch Ireland now has new leadership in place. At the AGM in July 2022, the Board was significantly revitalised when four new Trustees were elected with a range of skills to complement those of the two existing Trustees. Both the Governance and the Audit & Risk Committees have been re-instituted with all Trustees involved.
A permanent CEO has been in place since May 2022 and the Finance function has been considerably strengthened with the appointment of a new Head of Finance and Administration in September 2022, as well as the appointment of another financially qualified staff member.
As a result of all these changes, the organisation’s finances are in the process of being stabilised, and substantial steps have been taken to strengthen and change policies, working methods, operational oversight and governance procedures.
This will ensure that they remain consistent with recognised best practice in the charity and NGO sectors.
BirdWatch Ireland would like to reassure its members, supporters, stakeholders and the general public that it is committed to addressing the findings in the Report, and will strive to improve BirdWatch Ireland and continue its vital work as Ireland’s largest wildlife conservation charity.
It also wishes to assure its members and partners that the income of BWI is spent only on the protection of wild birds and their habitats through conservation initiatives, education and research.