Press Release from the Board of Children’s Group Link
Re: Cancellation of the 2020 House of Horrors Event
Since 2008 Children’s Group Link has been producing & hosting the House of Horrors. Having established itself as Ireland's Premier Halloween attraction, the event has welcomed over 35,000 visitors in its 12 year history.
Run by a voluntary cast and crew of 100 individuals – most of whom are young people aged 14-20, the House of Horrors has become an important recruitment programme from which many young people become full members of Children’s Group Link. More significantly, the House of Horrors is now the primary fundraising event for our organisation annually, generating net income of approximately €25,000 on average.
Due to the on-going Covid-19 crisis, the board has had to take the difficult but necessary decision to cancel the House of Horrors event for 2020.
Following a risk assessment which included independent advice, the board decided that the event could not be run safely and efficiently given the current restrictions and guidelines. The board took the decision in the best interests & well-being of our staff, volunteers, young people and the general public.
The loss of this year’s event is a devastating blow for all involved in the preparation & roll-out of the House of Horrors but it also leaves a significant shortfall in income required to run Children’s Group Link and its associated projects to the year end of 2020 and into the first quarter of 2021.
And although our organisation has received emergency grant assistance through the Government Covid-19 Stability Fund for the Community and Voluntary, Charity and Social Enterprises (of which we are very grateful) there is still an urgent need to raise funds.
We have also been informed that the Winterval Festival, of which Children’s Group Link plays an integral part, is to be significantly scaled back this year which will result in expected income loss of approx. €7,000 to Group Link. This on top of the lost income through the House of Horrors will have a significant impact on our finances.
We therefore must find alternative income sources. Our board and a specially formed sub-committee have been assessing options for income generation and have come up with a list of projects to be rolled out in the coming months. These include;
- Outdoor Market at our premises;
- Online Idonate page to encourage current and previous visitors to the House of Horrors to make a donation;
- Online weekly / monthly Raffle;
- Halloween Tennis Tournament at St. Anne’s Tennis Club;
- Mini Christmas Winter Wonderland on our grounds at Military Road; and
- A 120km cycle plus 30km walk (Cycle for Hope) – Spring 2021.
Right now we are asking our loyal House of Horrors Supporters who had planned to visit this year or who may have visited previously to Support Us by Donating €4 to help make up for lost revenue.
You can donate by going to https://www.idonate.ie/childrensgrouplink
The board wishes to assure all our members & volunteers as well as our loyal visitors that we intend to return to full production in 2021. To this end, plans are already being made to prepare & produce an exceptional House of Horrors for 2020.
We thank you most sincerely for your loyal and continues support.