Working with, and for, Older People through Philanthropy-Funded Non-Profit Organisations in Ireland

Andy Cochrane*, Sinead McGilloway, Michael Donnelly

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This case-study examined the role that philanthropic funding has played in enhancing the capacity of national NGOs in Ireland to advocate for, and with, older people. There was a relative lack of strategic focus on older people before the philanthropic work began (in 2003) and advocacy was only small-scale and uncoordinated. Philanthropic funding has enabled NGOs in Ireland to implement a considerable range of activities over a 7-year period (2007–2013). Three central findings emerged from a cross-sectional survey and documentary analysis including: 1) the value of developing more collaborative ways of working; 2) the importance of research and evidence to support policy and planning; and 3) the development of structures that promote the active involvement of older people in their communities. These factors have proved essential in strengthening the work of the NGOs and have enabled them, with support from others, to secure political commitment for key policy initiatives, including the development, for the first time, of a National Positive Ageing Strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)464-476
Number of pages13
JournalAgeing International
Issue number4
Early online date24 May 2017
Publication statusPublished - 01 Dec 2018


  • Advocacy
  • Older people
  • Philanthropy
  • Policy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)


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