THE famous St Finbarr's club has launched a fundraising initiative in aid of Pieta House.
The Barrs are hoping other GAA clubs in Cork will follow their lead and help the charity, who were forced to postpone their Darkness Into Light event because of Covid-19.
They've earmarked Saturday, May 9 for the new walk, when the Barrs' members and friends will complete a 5k, within the 2k radius of their own home, or do 5,000 steps in their own garden.
“We hope that other clubs from all sports across the city might support us and organise their own members to do the same,” said one of the organisers, Mick Finn.
This year's Darkness Into Light has been moved back until October 3. It annually generates €5.2m, over €500,000 of that coming from 22 locations across Cork.The southside club are already assisting in the Covid community effort and are now supporting Pieta’s Sunrise Appeal. The charity are encouraging people to get up and watch the sunrise at 5am on May 9 and raise donations on a day that would normally see over 250,000 flock to routes in Ireland and beyond.
“People all around Cork are coming up with their own walking and running routines in the current climate and many novel ideas for fundraising are being well supported…we hope that as they continue to do those, they might think of Pieta House and donate.
"We are asking our own members to literally step up and step out to help Pieta House continue to deliver their services free to the people of Cork and the region,” explained senior hurling club chairman Mick Finn.
The Barrs are urging other GAA and sporting organisations on Leeside to follow their lead.
Carrigaline are already commencing a 72-hour 'Run in Darkness and Light' for Pieta House event of their own from Thursday through to Sunday. Players are running in consecutive one-hour slots, within 2km of their homes.
Each club member is set to complete three one-hour runs, at least one between the hours of 11pm and 6am. They've already garnered €10k ahead of the fundraiser, which was introduced by Stephen Dwane.
Barrs chairman Mick Finn said: “Suicide prevention and bereavement counselling recognises no boundaries or rivalries. This would be sport coming together to defeat suicide.
“Like everybody else, our players of all age groups are struggling with the current restrictions and are really missing the training and matches; supporting them in terms of sponsorship to do their run or jog or walk around their homes, roads or parks - within their 2km radius - might give them a timely boost."
The Darkness Into Light route is always 5km but the organisers in the Barrs are inviting people to do whatever they can, once they abide by the social distancing requirements.
“It could be a case of measuring out a route in the garden or a stretch of street or road and doing the 5km or 1000 steps or whatever is manageable; it could mean people walking 2m apart around the Lough or around the block near their homes."
The Barrs will have a Go Fund Me page on Facebook and will have collection buckets in supporting supermarkets and also O’Connell’s Butchers, The Lough.
For more info contact Mick Finn on 0861940126 or email firstname.lastname@example.org