Almost €30k raised for hospital gym

(Above) Paul Murray, Mullingar Athletic, Rachel Clarke, physio therapy manager, Mairead Lacken, hospital general services manager (non clincal), Jean Depmsey, National Science Park, Kay Slevin, operations and clinical services manager, Caroline Carty, assistant director of nursing, Minister Robert Troy, Jackie Glennon, Mullingar Athletic, Joan Boyne, buisness manager (finance), Grainne Flanagan, dietitian manager, Dr Sam Kuan, ED emergency consultant and Paul O'Donovan, Mullingar Athletic on Friday afternoon.

The €30,000 raised during lockdown to purchase gym equipment for staff at Midlands Regional Hospital Mullingar demonstrates how highly the community values the work they do, Minister of State Robert Troy says.

A number of groups and individuals were involved in the online fundraising campaign set up by Deputy Troy, which raised over €14,000, a figure which was then matched by the people behind the National Science Park on the Dublin Road.

"I was toying with the idea of how to do something to show the front line workers how grateful we were. I am conscious that there were more than the hospital front line workers that stood up the plate and continue to do so, but at the time they were under tremendous pressure and I just wanted to show them that their efforts were appreciated. I got a group of like minded people together and we formed a little committee. Given we were restricted in what we could do fundraising wise, we started a campaign on the gofundme website," Deputy Troy told the Westmeath Examiner.

"A number of people reached out and said that they'd like to get involved such as Cooney's Kitchens in Coralstown that raised around €600 from a sponsored head shave, the Academy of Dance raised €400 or €500, the Bloomfield House Hotel raised over €1,000 and Mullingar Athletic raised over €1,800.

"There were a lot of little groups and when they saw that there was a committee coordinating it, these groups fed into it and the National Science Park matched what was raised. A lot of people were happy to be associated with it because they knew whatever they raised would be doubled.

"We contacted the hospital management team and asked them what the staff would like and we were asked for funding for their gym. People knew that the money that was raised was going towards something that the front line workers were going to benefit from themselves," Deputy Troy said.

Kay Slevin, operations and clinical services manager at MRH Mullingar, said that the staff at the hospital were "very grateful" for the donation.

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