Cervical cancer campaigner and patient advocate Vicky Phelan paid a visit to a children’s grief centre with a donation from money raised during the Climb with Charlie event.
The mother-of-two, who is best known for lifting the lid on the cervical smear test scandal in 2018, donated €5,300 to the country’s only dedicated children’s grief centre in Limerick.
The money was raised by one of her closest friends, Laura, and her sisters, along with Ms Phelan’s mother and father.
Ms Phelan flew home from the US last October after her own cancer treatment was stopped due to a growth in her tumours. She is now receiving palliative care.
The Kilkenny native who now lives in Limerick was due to participate in the Climb with Charlie, a fundraiser for the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association and Pieta House last month, but was forced to withdraw due to a deterioration in her health.
The former RTÉ chief reporter Charlie Bird was diagnosed with motor neurone disease late last year and committed to hiking Croagh Patrick in Co Mayo to raise awareness of the disease.
Writing on Instagram, Ms Phelan said: “[I] visited the premises of the Children’s Grief Centre here in Limerick with one of my oldest friends from home, Laura, to hand over a cheque for €5,300 raised by Laura and her sisters and my Dad and Mam following the Climb with Charlie event to Croagh Patrick last month.
“We met with founder Sr Helen, chief fundraiser Carol and psychotherapist Teresa, who gave up their precious time explaining what this money would mean to the charity. [They] rely on fundraising and donations to offer their services to children and young people in Limerick, Clare and Tipperary but also to children who come from further afield to avail of their unique services."
Ms Phelan explained that the donation will help the children's grief centre to provide support services to children and young people affected by loss through death, separation or divorce.
“The Centre provides a safe and supportive place for children and young people up to the age of 24, who are grieving,” she explained.
“The Children's Grief Centre in Limerick is the only dedicated grief centre open to children in the country. They are currently fundraising to build a new, purpose built centre so please, please consider fundraising for them if you have any future events coming up.
“They offer a fantastic service that so many more children and young people could avail of if the Centre were up and running in their new premises”.