1 in 10 children in Ireland are living in poverty.

The next budget is our chance to reduce child poverty in Ireland.

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Child poverty is not inevitable. There are measures we can take to reduce child poverty and help families who are struggling.

There are over 100,000 children in Ireland living in consistent poverty and that simply isn’t right. Children are going to bed or school hungry. One third of parents going are into debt just to be able to send their child back to school. We can do better. We need political leadership and real transformation in Ireland to free children from poverty once and for all.

The Budget is the last chance for this Government to do something to free families trapped in poverty. It should mark the beginning of what needs to be a long-term, concerted effort by our political leaders to end child poverty at the scale we have now. This Budget, and subsequent budgets, should be focused on ensuring that our children have access to basic healthcare, the opportunity to participate in society, free primary education and fundamentals like a hot nutritious meal every day. Our Budget 2020 Recommendations highlight some of the ways this Government can deliver these.

We have identified 6 key policies which would help reduce child poverty in Ireland. Read More →

We are also calling on the Government to have a National Action Plan to end child poverty. Budget 2020 needs to be the beginning of a long term, concerted effort by Government to end child poverty.


It’s time to tackle child poverty.

In 1919, the first democratically elected Irish parliament declared a republic and said it would be judged by its ability to do right by its children. Today 1 in 10 children in Ireland are living in poverty. We are working with a range or organisation who work with children to end child poverty together.


Take Action

We have identified 6 policies to reduce child poverty in the next budget.

Please take one minute to email your TD and the Ministers responsible for the budget to ask them to put ending child poverty first.


One in every four families in poverty do not have a medical card. The income thresholds currently in place have not been reviewed since 2005. That means that lower income working families who are struggling to make ends meet often do not qualify for a medical card which would give them access to basic healthcare for their children. Universal quality healthcare for all should be a key goal for government and by increasing the thresholds, we can begin to close the gap between these families and the healthcare supports they need.
— Tri c i a Ke i lt h y , H e ad of Soc i a l J u s ti c e , S t Vi n c e n t de Pa u l
The long-term vision needs to be one focused on making education truly free for the children in this country. We need a concerted effort to address the rising school costs in both primary and secondary school that are squeezing the opportunities of children to participate fully in education and reach their full potential. Action to address inequality in education does not have to wait. The Government can use Budget 2020 to make a start by making school books free for every child in primary school. This can be done with €20 million, just 0.2% of the Department’s budget.
— S u z a n n e C on nol l y , C h i e f E x e c u ti v e , Ba r n a rdos
To support the children most in need, we also need to see targeted measures in this Budget. One parent families are five times more likely to live in consistent poverty. We know that families with older children also struggle to afford adequate food, clothing and social activities. Our budget recommendations aim to support families to support themselves. We are calling for investment in childcare supports so that families do not lose out in the new National Childcare Scheme. The Social Support Fund we are asking for will mean support for families who are already experiencing deprivation and social exclusion, to prevent any more children falling below the poverty line.”
— Ka r e n Ki e r n a n , D ir e c tor, O n e F a mi l y