Aintree Grand National-winning jockey Rachael Blackmore with twin brothers Conor and Killian Keane from Ardfinnan at the announcement of the Tour de Munster’s partnership with Down Syndrome Ireland
Tour de Munster, the 600 kilometres annual charity cycle which is set to take place from August 5-8 has announced its official charity partnership with the Munster branches of Down Syndrome Ireland (DSI).
On hand to help announce the partnership was Aintree Grand National-winning jockey Rachael Blackmore.
Entering its 21st year this August, Tour de Munster has raised significant sums for some very worthy beneficiaries along the way, contributing over €3.4 million in total.
For DSI Munster branches alone, the tour has raised a staggering €3 million since becoming the main beneficiary of the tour in 2010.
Down Syndrome Ireland offers a range of vital supports and services to children and adults with Down Syndrome and their families in Munster and throughout Ireland.
Funds raised from the tour play a significant role across the Munster branches of DSI.
Each year, an average of 120 cyclists make their way around the six counties of Munster on a four-day journey, raising much-needed funds and awareness for DSI Munster branches.
Long-standing supporter of the Tour de Munster, Seán Kelly, will once again take to the road this August for his sixteenth tour.
All cyclists cover their own expenses and every cent raised from the event goes to the beneficiary.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had serious implications on DSI’s fundraising capabilities.
86% of DSI’s annual funding comes from public fundraising activities and the wonderful generosity of communities, workplaces, schools and individuals throughout Ireland.
With the cancellation of many activities, it has been an extremely difficult time to raise funds.
Barry Sheridan, CEO of Down Syndrome Ireland, said “Tour de Munster is such a fantastic charity initiative and we are very honoured and thankful to be the main beneficiary of the tour once again.
"Not only have the funds raised helped hugely, but the tour has created a really close community between the Munster branches of DSI. As you can imagine, the past year has been very difficult for us and more importantly those depending on our services.
"I hope as many people as possible can support the Tour in 2021 and we’re looking forward to another great year.”
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