Community rallies after Xmas presents destined for hospital are stolen

By Simon Walsh

The Clondalkin community has shown the depth of its Christmas spirit this week and rallied after presents, donated by the public and destined for Our Lady’s Childrens Hospital in Crumlin, were stolen from Bawnogue Community Centre.

According to Clondalkin Equine Club Secretary Glen Walsh, on Monday evening a man purporting to be from the club, who had organised the charitable collection, entered the Bawnogue Community Centre where the donations were being kept and said he was there to collect the presents on their behalf.

Clondalkin Equine Club 3 resized

“The woman who was in the community centre would not know everyone in our club, and she certainly would not have thought someone would stoop so low” explained Walsh.

“We had collections for the hospital in the past and we have kind of promised to do it every year now, and it had taken us a couple of weeks to get all the presents collected.

“When we realised what had happened I put a post on Facebook, more to vent my anger than anything, but there was an immediate response from the local community, which has been overwhelming.”

Clondalkin Equine Club 1 resized

The community quickly rallied, and a huge amount of donations, including large sums of money from a local business and from locals working in Corcoran’s Bar in Paris, were collected.

Bawnogue Amateur Boxing Club and My Lovely Horse Rescue also gave donations as word spread of what had happened.

The team of volunteers then made their way to the local toy store and bought as many toys as they could, while many others donated toys of their own.

“The spirit and the drive of the people in Clondalkin has just been incredible, everyone is pitching in because they don’t want the kids’ Christmas in hospital to be ruined” stated Walsh.

“Even those people who did not have anything to give came over and gave their time, they helped with collecting donations and with wrapping the presents, and we are very thankful to them all.

“We’ve wrapped every present we could, and the cash donations that have come in to us since we bought the toys will also be donated to the hospital.”



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