By Philip Downes
More than €14,000 has been raised so far for Galway Simon Community’s ‘Dip A Day in May’ fundraiser.
The fundraiser, the first one being held by Galway Simon Community, will see over 150 participants swim every day throughout the month of May, to raise funds for the homeless charity. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most fundraisers put on by the charity have had to be cancelled, with their two flagship charity shops also closed due to restrictions.
“I feel that the pandemic has made families more vulnerable to homelessness due to loss of employment and income” said Claire Connolly (23). “I have been fortunate enough to be still working throughout the pandemic, however when I walk through Galway, I think of how it must be even more difficult with an increased sense of loneliness for those on the streets or alone in houses, due to COVID restrictions. Galway Simon Community have always done great work with people on the ground, and I know that the money donated will help the people locally, which is what I want to achieve. Any contribution can make a huge impact and I’m glad to be helping out in any way I can.”
Amy Lavelle, Community & Youth Partnerships Co-ordinator with Galway Simon Community, said they were ‘blown away’ by the number of respondents for the fundraiser.
“We’re absolutely blow away by the level of interest in our first ever Dip a Day in May Challenge and we’re deeply grateful to each of the participants, and their friends and family for the incredible support they’ve shown so far”, Amy said.
“Since the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Galway Simon Community has had to cancel many of their fundraising events and collections. Their two charity shops, which are a vital source of income for their frontline homelessness prevention and housing services, have also been closed for many months. The need for their services is greater than ever, and now that the moratorium on evictions has been lifted the charity are very concerned about what lies ahead.”
“Every day, our frontline services are supporting people who are having to make difficult sacrifices, placing them at risk of homelessness, due to the financial strains that they are under from Covid-19. The reality is we have yet to see the true impact of Covid-19 on our community and Galway Simon Community is concerned that we will see a steep rise in homelessness as the Covid restrictions start to ease. We need to ensure that we can be there for as many individuals and families as possible and that is why we are calling on our community to please show your support by sponsoring the participants to complete their challenge,” Amy added.
Galway Simon Community urges people to donate through their website, www.galwaysimon.ie
For more Galway Pulse stories click here.