When the IFSC was established in Dublin's docklands some 20 years ago, it filled an area that had previously been bustling with shipping activity.
Education had not been a priority amongst dockland people as they had shared an expectation of secure manual jobs for which primary school education sufficed. They were ill-prepared for the changes brought by the fast-moving technology, which had changed their world. They were equally unprepared to avail of the many jobs created by the IFSC.
As major companies began to occupy the IFSC, a group of its executives gathered to consider how best the IFSC could extend a hand of friendship and support to their neighbours in the dockland community. The IFSC Dublin Inner City Trust was formed and, with the great generosity of IFSC organisations, the Trust was able to support many energetic groups working within the docklands to counteract the effects of unemployment.
As in every situation of adversity, excellent people emerged from within the community to confront the new challenges. They continue to work with selfless dedication to make the inner city a better place and to give young people help, encouragement and hope. Above all, they strive to meet the inner city’s unique educational needs. The Trust has a proud record of supporting their efforts.
The support of KPMG and other IFSC companies has enabled the Trust to support inner city community groups in their efforts to alleviate problems affecting disadvantaged people within the community. Organisations that help young people to overcome drug addiction, care for the elderly and provide activities for young and old have all benefited from the Trust’s support.
Recognising that education is central to the elimination of disadvantage, the Trust has concentrated its efforts in the general area of education and has committed the majority of its available funds to the support of educational projects, ranging from infant pre-school training to third-level courses.
Most gratifying is the enthusiasm and determination with which people have grasped educational opportunities, which would have been beyond their reach without the financial aid provided by the Trust. Young people have been helped to enter secondary education and to continue their progress to third-level courses. In addition, many adults, having previously found lack of education to be a barrier to progress, have returned to education with impressive determination.
In everything it does, the Trust is merely a conduit for the goodwill and generosity of the IFSC community. That generosity has – in so many ways – made a difference, and the lives of countless inner city people have been changed for the better.