A message from Tony Ward, Head of Fundraising

We had an extremely busy couple of months on the fundraising front for Fighting Blindness, having been nominated as a beneficiary charity for  a number of events.

Image of Tony Ward and Darragh McDaidThe Cara Bundoran Challenge in March and the Terenure 5 Mile Road Race in May were fantastic to be a part of and we greatly appreciate the support of the organisers and participants of each. in addition to these events we also had a group doing a 640km cycle from Mizen to Malin over six days from June 8 to 13.

Aside from the great opportunity to make people around the country aware of the work of Fighting Blindness, these events help us to raise funds for our on-going work. A more unusual common thread for all three events is that I took part in all of them! As a visually impaired person, when I first got my diagnosis over 20 years ago, one of the things I missed most was not being able to participate in sport, something I had always enjoyed. But as time went by and as I connected with organisations and people who encouraged visually impaired people to take part in sport, I found guides to run with and tandems and tandem pilots to go cycling with, so it was a great honour to be able to participate in all three events.

Aside from ‘flying the flag’ for Fighting Blindness I also personally enjoy the challenges of the runs and cycles and I hope it also sends out a message that there is no reason why people affected by sight loss cannot participate in sport if they wish to.

Image of Tony Ward and Cathal Roarty tandem cyclingI would like to extend our thanks to all of the people who helped organise the above events and the many volunteers and fundraisers who made them possible and worthwhile.

Being a nominated charity for an event is very important to Fighting Blindness as sometimes trying to organise your own event as a small charity takes a lot of resources and effort so if anyone knows of local sports events that choose beneficiary charities please do let them know about Fighting Blindness and encourage them to nominate us as a potential beneficiary. We can promise that we will row in behind the event and I promise I’ll take part!