In these strange and troubling times, conditions have strived to keep us apart yet have driven us together in some awe inspiring ways.
Wit our frontline resources stretched, people went above and beyond everyday, every moment, in every way just to keep the rest of us safe.
While on the other hand we have sports people and their clubs who are used to going above and beyond on the pitch and in their community now restricted, confined and even cocooned.
On Saturday May 17, Kilfeacle & District RFC and Golden/Kilfeacle GAA Club came together to raise money for the frontline workers of local charities - Brothers of Charity (who have two care homes in the parish), Mount Sion Residential Centre (Tipperary Town) and St Patrick’s Hospital (Cashel).
They originally set out a target of €6,000 to fundraise for the frontline workers. This target was surpassed even before the challenge kicked off at 10am on Saturday morning!
When the fundraiser finished at 1pm on Monday afternoon, the total raised was €17,203.
The idea was to “Keep It Moving” for 24 hours. This involved members from both clubs being assigned an hour each and the challenge within that hour was to, “Keep It Moving.”
When organisers Shane Luby (Kilfeacle & District RFC) and Shane Stapleton (Golden/Kilfeacle GAA Club) met for the first time they put together a number of possible ways of fundraising for the frontline. The Keep It Moving Challenge was a mixture of ideas that were put out there.
Speaking about the participants, Shane Luby said - “It was fantastic to see former players who have moved away from us taking part. We had people living across Ireland volunteering to do an hour.
“This then led to guys now based in Minnesota in America, Sydney, Perth and Toronto taking part. The challenge really created a huge sense of community spirit for the day. Social media platforms were busy all day long and I think this really added to the whole day.
“I think the picture of Esther O’Connell, who is 90 years of age, taking part at 1pm really put pressure on fellas! The players in both clubs really drove the whole thing on. Everyone did what was asked of them and a lot more.”
Shane Stapleton commented - “Both clubs had no issue with filling their hour-long slots. They doubled and even tripled up on some slots. In total over 250 people took part.
Families got involved, which is what it’s all about. Members of the clubs also had to find ways of completing their hour within social distancing guidelines, which was again challenging in these times.
“We were out in our cars making sure participants who were filling the graveyard shifts were safe.”
Both clubs could not believe the support they received.
“I think any person I have spoken to since the event have commented about how they were glued to the Go Fund Me page all day. Myself and Shane were in constant contact the whole day long and we were amazed.
“Even in the early hours of Sunday morning, people were donating. I think everybody wanted to recognise the frontline workers in our own locality.
“In this climate, we all say we would do whatever we can to help those who need it most and our frontline workers are doing that. This was our way of working in consolidating with those on the frontline,” remarked Shane Luby.
Golden/ Kilfeacle GAA Club Chairman Brian Leamy said - “The whole day was a testament to the two clubs. There was no stone left unturned in the organisation of the event, even though it wasn’t easy with social distancing rules. Thanks to all those who participated and donated. We really appreciate it.”
The money raised will be spent on vouchers in local shops who have struggled during this pandemic. These vouchers will then be given to frontline workers of the three local charities.
“By donating to this fundraiser, people were also helping our local businesses. Clubs depend on the support of local businesses to keep running. This was our chance to give something back to them,” said Michael Doyle, President of Kilfeacle & District RFC.
Both clubs would like to say a huge “Thank you” to all who participated and donated to our 24 Hour Keep It Moving Challenge and also to those working on the frontline in our local communities and across the world for the work you are doing.