€144,146 remaining in Irish Red Cross Creeslough fund

Deirdre Garvey is Irish Red Cross Secretary General.


THE Irish Red Cross still has €144,146 in funding to support those impacted by the 2022 Creeslough tragedy, and intends to visit the village in the coming weeks to outline how the money, raised through public and corporate donations, will be distributed.


Figures obtained by Donegal News show total Creeslough-related payments from the Irish Red Cross has reached €1,762,203.

Further analysis shows that €16,566 has been spent on tax advice and other 3rd party charges related to helping families to process donations.

Travel and accommodation costs claimed by Red Cross staff members last year came to €16,043.

This has been explained by the charity wishing to maintain a regular presence in Creeslough throughout 2023.

In addition, €13,737 has been spent by the Irish Red Cross to PayPal and Stripe to process online transactions.

The charity says it has €144,146 left in its Creeslough fund which is earmarked for a ‘legacy community project’ and other support.

More details on how this will be spent are due to be unveiled next month when a senior management team from the Irish Red Cross visits the village.


“The generosity relating to this appeal was unprecedented in terms of domestic emergencies happening on the island of Ireland,” according to Irish Red Cross Secretary General, Deirdre Garvey, pictured below..

On October 7, 2022 an explosion occurred close to a service station in Creeslough resulting in ten fatalities and eight people requiring hospitalisation. An investigation into the precise cause of the disaster is ongoing, gardaí confirmed to the Donegal News yesterday.

The Irish Red Cross has explained that money donated to families, directly impacted by the tragedy, was allocated based on need, following careful assessment.

“We had an oversight committee comprising of family members, our own staff, and a complete outsider. We came up with a framework that was developed completely, neutrally and independently of any of the individual situations of need.

“We looked at things like; were there dependent children, adult children, siblings, special circumstances. We had a staff member there to understand the situation. He had tens, if not hundreds of conversations with various parts of the various families,” said Ms. Garvey.

The Irish Red Cross says it contributed €21,000 worth of staff costs for free as part of its support for Creeslough.

The charity says one of its team was present and working with the community every week during 2023. In addition, it waived all administration fees which usually amounts to 7% of the total raised.

Those who died were Robert Garwe and his 5-year-old daughter Shauna Flanagan-Garwe, Catherine O’Donnell and her 13-year-old son James Monaghan, Jessica Gallagher, Martin McGill, James O’Flaherty, Martina Martin, Hugh Kelly, and 14-year-old Leona Harper.

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