Part-time requirement to work being seriously considered by Minister Burton

Part-time requirement to work being seriously considered by Minister Burton – announcement at the launch of our Annual Review 2011 and graduation today. Following a critique of recent cuts aimed at lone parents and recommendations from One Family, the Minister has undertaken to review how lone parents will be moved onto Job Seeker’s Allowance when their youngest child is 7. This is a positive and necessary move as it is completely unreasonable to expect lone parents to be available for full time work.

One Family Director Karen Kiernan on RTE with Joan Burton

One Family Director Karen Kiernan was on RTE TV’s Frontline last night with Joan Burton TD. Karen was speaking up for lone parents and the Jobbridge programme set up by government last week. Karen got to make a few points about the activation of lone parnents, at 44 minutes in.

Volunteers Needed for Media Research

 Volunteers Needed for Media Research and Project Co-ordination for One Family 40th Anniversary

One Family is Ireland’s leading organisation for one-parent families. Set up as Cherish in 1972, with Mary Robinson as Chairperson, we mark our 40th anniversary this year and have a number of campaigns and projects planned. We are looking for skilled volunteers or interns to help with the below projects:

  • 40 Stories – written project
    Job: Gather information and write up stories from former clients, of their experience of parenting alone or sharing parenting and of their experience with One Family.
  • An Oral History of One Family – audio project
    Job: Set up, record and edit interviews with the founders, early members and supporters of One Family.
  • Celebrating One-parent Families – major awareness-raising campaign
    Job: Gather together and write up profiles of 100 high profile people who live in or come from a one-parent family. To help change attitudes towards one-parent families, this campaign shares information on some of the many well known one-parent families that exist in Ireland and elsewhere.

If you are interested in volunteering your time free of charge for a great cause –  and feel you have the required skill-set for any of the above – please email your CV to  Many thanks!

Minister Burton responds to Ciara Conway TD re One Family queries

Ciara Conway T.D. has kindly given us permission to share the following information. Following our meeting with Ciara and our two page budget analysis, she raised several issues about the budget cuts with Minister Burton. Minister Burton’s letter of response is enclosed here and this is One Family Director Karen Kiernan’s response to Ciara Conway:

Dear Ciara,

Many thanks for corresponding with Minister Burton on our behalf. Whilst the letter provides factual information and some of it is drawn from the letter that will shortly go to parents in relation to the One-Parent Family Payment unfortunately it is still not clear what the Department’s strategy is in this area, what policy and research this was based on and how they will ameliorate the poor education levels of parents, the lack of employment and the absolute dearth of afterschool care.

Regrettably it has become clear to me that these cuts were made without reference to policy or research but were simply a means of cutting the budget without touching the principal rates of social welfare payments. What is even more unfortunate is that so many of these cuts have fallen on the shoulders of the poorest families and children in Ireland. One Family and our members will continue to speak and advocate on these issues and we appreciate your assistance to date and we look forward to working with you in the future.

Best wishes, Karen

Update on our campaign to reverse budget cuts

Here is any update on what we’ve been doing – we have lobbied every TD and senator by phone or email and have managed to get meetings with Labour and FG politicians today to try and get changes to the proposed cuts. Senators are also raising questions for us today. We have also emailed thousands of supporters and other organisations asking for support to reverse some of the cuts. We are constantly in touch with Dept of Social Protection seeking clarification on dates and phasing in times. We can respond to any individual queries if anyone wants to call our helpline 1890622122. One Family is joining a protest tomorrow being organised by a group of enterprising lone parents and we encourage everyone to join us to show your support. 2-5pm outside the Dail Friday 9 Dec!/events/129422247170088/

European Parliament adopts a report on the Situation of Single Mothers

On 25 October the European Parliament approved an own initiative report on the situation of single mothers, to which Eurochild contributed together with its member organisation One Family. The report outlines that in 2001 85% of single parents were women aged 25-65 and that these women are statistically less educated than married counterparts, face higher level of unemployed, are underpaid, as well as suffer bad health and increased level of stress due to their fragile situation. The issue is particularly important not only because a number of single parent households in Europe is constantly increasing, but also because they are almost three times more likely to be at risk of poverty and social exclusion than couples with children. Read more

Please vote for One Family video

We need your votes every day please between now and 11 November for a short video about Family Day which we have submitted for the Better Together Awards. If we get enough votes the video will go into the top ten and could win €3000 for One Family.

All you need to do is click this link and then choose the 5 star option ‘awesome’ each day. Every vote helps to support the work we do here for people who parent alone and share parenting and for our campaign to raise awareness of family diversity in Ireland. Thank you in advance!

Lots of media this week about one-parent families and One Family

Jamelia has made a wonderful documentary on Single Mums showing on BBC3, for air times see Our Director Karen Kiernan has been speaking about social welfare fraud and lone parents on TV3’s Ireland AM at in response to a very poor article in the Irish Daily Mail on the issue on Tuesday. Finally One Family was mentioned in the Irish Times where advice was being given to a separated woman who wants to get back to work, see more at

For all this information and more follow us on facebook:

Interesting Irish Times piece on one-parent families

Interesting piece by Ann Marie Hourihane in today’s Irish Times – about how single mothers seem to have been unfairly scapegoated as being in some way ‘responsible’ for the London riots see

One Family on Zozzy TV

Thanks to the good people at Zozzy TV, our video ‘One Family Stories’ is now being shown on the huge screen at the top of Dublin’s Grafton Street. It helps spread the word about the need for acceptance of and support for one-parent families. Thanks very much Zozzy. You can see the video here