Thomas Lynch and his nephew Aodhan Gallagher on a recent fund raising cycle.

Duleek Camino fundraiser for homeless

A major fund raising initiative in Duleek will see a local woman walk the Camino to Santiago de Compostela next week, while many others will do their own 'caminos' at home here in Ireland and around the world.

The Helping Hand, Helping Communities group in Duleek has organised the fundraiser for the homeless which will see Patricia Gallagher start her Camino walk in Spain on Sunday (today) and complete her 125km walk over five days next week.

The groups 1,000kms Team Challenge will also see volunteers participate in one of the three categories of their choice, 50kms walk, 50kms run or 100kms cycle before Friday 21st October. Volunteers can complete the events in groups or on their own, which ever they prefer.

Helping Hands/Helping Communities was set up by Tomas Lynch back in 2019. "I was sitting at home relaxing, watching the Grand Prix on television and scrolling on my phone when I saw two friends of mine giving out sleeping bags to the homeless. They were members of the Homeless Ireland Action Collective." Thomas got a group together, opened an account for Helping Hand Helping Communities in Duleek Credit Union and they have been raising funds since, donating to homeless charities in Navan, Drogheda and Dubin. They have raised funds for Drogheda Womens Refuge, Meath Food Bank and Stronger Together Ireland.

Last year the group did its first Camino Challenge with 19 people participating to raise €2,490, as well as a further 10 people in Australia who decided to join in and raised €3,000.

"Due to last year's success we were in a position to support Drogheda Cares For The Homeless, Drogheda Women's Refuge, SOSAD , Duleek Senior Citizens, Stronger Together Ireland and Homeless Ireland Action Collective."

This year, the proceeds will go towards purchasing supplies for the homeless and donations will also be made to the homeless Duleek Senior Citizens and Drogheda Cares for the Homeless. Thomas explained that they donate sleeping bags, tents and food to the homeless.