The Lions “Spirit of Christmas
Hamper Appeal” was launched recently in the grounds of Kilkenny Castle by
Cathaoirleach Andrew McGuinness, Mayor John Coonan, Lions President Pat
O’Hanlon and special guest Brian Cody.
Cathaoirleach Andrew McGuinness thanked the Lions for the significant amount
of money they have allocated over the years to organisations in County Kilkenny
. He said that, without the Lions
support, many organisations would find it difficult to fully fund their
It is hard for a lot of people in these difficult times and he appealed
to those who are in a position to help, to dig deep and help a good local
He thanked the Kilkenny People and KCLR who do such great work in
promoting the appeal.
At the launch , Mayor John Coonan
referred to the various fundraising activities of the Lions Club and said
that he knew it was a challenging time for the Lions club
and other charities throughout Kilkenny as Covid restrictions have affected
their ability to run a number of fundraising events.
John congratulated the Lions Club for the positive contribution they
make in Kilkenny. Many organisations benefit greatly from the Lions fundraising
and he thanked all those volunteers in these organisations who do such great
work in our community.
Lions President Pat O’Hanlon said he was delighted to launch our 2020
“Spirit of Christmas” Hamper Appeal. This is a fundraising campaign undertaken
annually by Kilkenny Lions Club in partnership with KCLR and Kilkenny People.
As COVID-19 continues to impact our daily lives, the future has never
felt so unpredictable. These are challenging times for all of us and I
appreciate the pressures so many businesses and people are under. In times like
this we are reminded how interconnected we all are, as we try and serve those
less well of in our society. Now, more than ever, our community needs our help,
and we need your support.
“Spirit of Christmas” builds on the success of the annual hamper appeal which
has been run by Kilkenny Lions Club for the last twenty eight years. This and other events, to date, have raised
more than €780,000 over that period. 100%
of the money collected is distributed to the charities as no administration or
other costs are incurred. The proceeds have gone to assist many local
organizations such as the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Kilkenny Social Services,
Church of Ireland, Good Shepherd Centre,Amber Women’s Refuge Centre and many other
organisations throughout the City and County of Kilkenny. In total, Kilkenny Lions have supported over
90 local community organizations over that period.
The primary fund raising is through
the auction and sale of goods or services donated by local businesses. The appeal is divided into two sections, a
“Farm Section” and a “General Section”.
The Kilkenny People Newspaper publishes the “General” and “Farm Auction”
lists with names of over 200 businesses over a three week period prior to and
during the auction. The goods or
services are then auctioned by KCLR96FM on “air” and it is hoped over €20,000
will be raised. The General and Farm Auctions will take place this year in late
November and early December.
We also expect to have a shop available during this
period to display the items to be auctioned and where people can collect the purchase
This event would not be the wonderful success that it
has been over the years without the support and generosity of many hard working
people in our community. Kilkenny Lions would like to thank the many people who
contribute unselfishly each year to making this a success –
KCLR and Kilkenny People for their
partnership over the years.
Brian Cody for his unfailing support
The 200 or so, local businesses,
without whose generosity the auction could not happen.
The people of Kilkenny who donate so
Fellow members of the Lions Club who
give hugely of their time each year.
He acknowledged that this year will be very
challenging with a number of other fundraising events having to be cancelled
because of Covid. They include the Schools Concert, Wine Fair, and sponsored
Duck Race He announced a new fundraising event by the club which will use the
medium of social media namely GoFundMe, to help compensate for these lost
concluded by thanking again everybody for their support of the Lions Charity
Appeal and he is confident that it will be a tremendous success
Brian Cody congratulated the Lions for all their
great work over the years and he was delighted to have been asked again to launch the appeal with the
Mayor, Cathaoirleach and the President of Kilkenny Lions Club.
referred to the generosity of the people of Kilkenny who are never found
wanting in helping the less well off in our community.
also thanked the business community who every year donate a significant amount
of items for the auction.
concluded by wishing Lions every success over the Christmas period.
Kilkenny Lions Club has supported St Vincent de Paul (and various other charitable purposes in Kilkenny) for the last 20 years through projects like concerts, street collections and various novelty events.
Unfortunately, due to Covid 19 these activities are not an option this year. Therefore, we have decided to hold a GoFundMe campaign specifically for St Vincent de Paul (SVP).
On Saturday in Kilkenny Golf Club, Kilkenny Lions Club and Kilkenny County Council launched a significant environmental initiative funded by the Council’s Waste Prevention Program. Read the full article on the Kilkenny Peoples Website here
At the Kilkenny Lions Club annual meeting
through Zoom, Pat O’Hanlon was elected President for 2020/2021.
The outgoing President Rodger Curran wished him
a very successful year.
Pat joined Kilkenny Lions in 2014, and has chaired
the subcommittee which runs the annual golf classic from which many charities
As an educationalist and former Secondary school
Principal, he is committed to supporting the wellbeing and positive mental
health of students in schools. He led a Lions initiative locally supported by
the National executive of Lions Clubs of Ireland in distributing an information
pamphlet for parents/guardians around Cyber Bullying
This initiative required a visit to over thirty
schools both Primary and Secondary in the
Kilkenny region. The school’s authorities embraced
it with great enthusiasm. Over three thousand parents /guardians received
valuable tips around strategies to protect their families from negative social
Pat resides in Kilkenny city with my wife Mary,
they have two grown up and married daughters Rhona & Dearbhla.
Pat’s outside interests include golfing, gardening,
reading and GAA .
For his year in office Pat, with the help
of all the committee members and with the generous support of the people of
Kilkenny including the business sector, intends to follow in the footsteps of
his predecessors in providing support and help for those in our City and County
He thanked the Kilkenny People and KCLR for giving such
great publicity to the various Lions fundraising events. He said that he looked
forward to continuing the great work and outstanding service of the outgoing
president Rodger Curran.
The past year has been very successful with
fundraising events including the Xmas Hamper Appeal, Schools Concert, Wine
Fair, Golf Classic, Street Collection, Carol Singing, and Sponsored Duck race.
The funds raised have allowed Kilkenny
Lions to provide valuable assistance to
St. Vincent De Paul
Amber Kilkenny Women’s Refuge Centre
Good Shepherd Centre
Meals on Wheels
Kilkenny Sub Aqua
and to 10 other local voluntary organisations in the City and County.
Throughout the country, charity
organisations are finding fundraising difficult as a result of Covid 19. The
club has normally seven fundraising events between now and Christmas and he is
in no doubt that this year, organising some of these will be especially
challenging. However, Pat is confident that any challenges will be surmounted, even
if it means that they are organised somewhat differently than before. Pat added
that we are facing a new normal and this will require innovative and new ways
of engaging to see our projects through to fruition.
said that he hopes that his year as President will see this outstanding club having a very successful
year supporting good causes and working in the service of others.
Ryan from Westport has been elected as District Governor of Lions Clubs
International in Ireland. He succeeds Bernard Black of Antrim Coast Lions Club
and will lead 2,150 Lions who are members of 103 Clubs in District 133 of the
in Dublin, Des is grandson of the late Terry O’Sullivan, journalist and diarist
and is a nephew of the writer and broadcaster Nuala O’Faolain.
moved to Westport with his parents in 1980 and after graduating in Construction
Studies at Galway RTC, he worked in the structural steel industry prior to
establishing his own company in 2004.
initially joined Lions Clubs International through Leos, its youth
organisation. He was the founding president of Westport Leo Club and went on to
become the youngest member of Westport Lions Club, later serving as secretary
and club president. He headed the North West Zone of Lions Clubs before his
election as Vice District Governor.
District Governor, Des plans to enhance the national understanding of Lions Clubs
ethos and activities.
Clubs are active in almost every community on this island, supporting the
vulnerable and those in need through a very wide range of projects. At national
level we are engaged in health, education, community support, youth development
and sport while our District also supports major international humanitarian
projects undertaken by the Lions Clubs International Foundation’, he says.
adds that Lions Clubs in Ireland has responded to the Covid 19 pandemic by
supporting local communities and by contributing €95,000 to purchase and
distribute 100,000 Hero Shields to front line workers.
need to create a greater public awareness of our activities, so that we can
attract new members and raise the necessary funds’, he says.
Governor, Des also plans to enhance the use of communications technology by
Lions Clubs, to offer training to members and leadership opportunities to a new
generation of Lions Clubs officers.
sportsman who has played soccer and GAA, Des enjoys playing guitar, singing and
gardening. He is married to Sara (they met at a Leo Club meeting) and they are
parents to Catherine (26),
Jessica (21), Emma (13) and Ben(11) and grandparents of Elisagh (4).
Lions Clubs throughout
Ireland to raise €100,000 for ‘Hero Shield’ Visors
Lions Clubs have
pledged to raise up to €100,000 to fund 200,000 ‘Hero Shield’ face visors which
will be distributed free of charge to front line health workers throughout
The project, led by
James O’Sullivan of Macroom Lions Club, was initially supported by nine other
clubs in the Zone and has since gained the support of Lions Clubs District 133,
which covers the island of Ireland. District Governor Bernard Black has asked
the 106 Lions Clubs in the District to support the project with donations.
President Kilkenny Lions Club said that the Club was delighted to support this
important initiative and our contribution has been sent to the national Lions
coordinators. He thanked all our front line workers and said the whole country
is so proud of them.
Says Lions Zone
Chairman Orla Flavin from Cobh Lions Club:
‘We are already
getting a very positive response from Lions Clubs all over the country and we
are confident that we will reach our target of €100,000. Not all heroes wear
capes but as Lions Clubs, we can help make sure our heroes wear shields’.
James O’Sullivan of
Macroom Lions Club, who initiated the project adds:
across the country are giving their time, talents and tools free of charge to produce
these visors which are manufactured here in Ireland, are certified and meet EU
Standards. Covid 19 teams North and South have already approved the Lions
Hero Shields. An Garda Síochána, Hospitals and, Care Homes North and South
across the country have been contacted and are anxious to take delivery of our
PPE’s as soon as possible. The need is clear as statistics show front line
staff account for almost a quarter of the Covid-19 cases in Ireland’.
Clubs District Governor Bernard Black:
‘The 1.4m members
of 46,000 Lions Clubs throughout the world are dedicated to serving their
communities and this project enables Lions Clubs to make a meaningful
contribution to the battle against Covid 19 in Ireland. It also complements the
wide range of voluntary community support which Lions Clubs have been offering
to their local communities since the virus first emerged in Ireland.’
The Hero Shield is
a full-face visor designed to be used by front line workers in the battle
against the COVID19 virus. It is a vital piece of Personal Protective
Equipment in the armoury of kit helping to protect those who put themselves at
risk to help others.
The visors are
manufactured in Ireland by Hero Shield, a new not-for-profit collective of
companies, and are certified as meeting all relevant EU standards. The HSE has
already noted that, as the visor has no moving parts, it is easier to sterilise
and reuse than many existing solutions.
The Hero Shield
will be available free to HSE and An Garda Síochána personnel in the Republic
of Ireland and NHS and PSNI personnel in Northern Ireland.