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Donegal footballer Daire Ó Baoill pictured ahead of the fundraiser for 10-month old baby Olivia ‘Livie’ Mulhern.
Donegal footballer Daire Ó Baoill pictured ahead of the fundraiser for 10-month old baby Olivia ‘Livie’ Mulhern.

Donegal players to embark on fundraising cycle

The Donegal GAA team and management will host a fundraising cycle this Sunday, July 19 to raise funds for 10-month old baby Olivia ‘Livie’ Mulhern.

Livie was recently diagnosed with a rare and serious genetic neuromuscular condition called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and needs urgent surgery in the US, costing over $2,100,000.

Eoghan Bán Gallagher is one of the players organising the event: “This Sunday, players will set off from nine different locations and cycle to Ballybofey.

“We’re timing it so we all arrive in MacCumhaill Park at roughly the same time, and between us, we plan to visit all 39 Donegal GAA football clubs on the day, meet club members and players, while adhering to “Safe Return”protocols, before getting back on our bikes,” he said.

Squad members will set off from Ardara, Bundoran, Clonmany, Downings, Cloughaneely, Gaoth Dobhair, Glencolmcille, Malin and Pettigo” Eoghan said. “We’re split up into nine groups and will be meeting up with each other along the way.

Group 1 and 2 will meet at Naomh Brid and cycle to Four Masters GAA, where they’ll meet up with Group 3, and continue to Mac Cumhaill Park. Group 4 and 5 will meet at Fintown and continue to Mac Cumhaill Park via Glenfin, while Group 6 and 7 will meet at St. Eunan’s GAA and cycle to Mac Cumhaill Park via St. Mary’s, Convoy.

Group 8 and 9 will meet at Bridgend and continue to Mac Cumhaill Park via Burt, Naomh Colmcille, Lifford, Robert Emmets, Castlefin and Red Hughs GAA. Finally, Group 6 and 7 will meet up with Group 8 and 9 at Mc Clay’s Corner, Stranorlar and finish together.

The groups are aiming to all arrive at Mac Cumhaill Park for approximately 4.30pm and people can check in with their local clubs for the approximate arrival times at each club. We’d like to thank everyone for supporting our fundraiser and would ask that you continue to respect COVID-19 social distancing guidelines.

Livie’s parents Keith and Karen are working closely with the Donegal GAA on the charity event: “We’re so grateful to the Donegal squad and management for supporting our daughter.” Keith said.

“We desperately need to raise funds for Livie and have been overwhelmed by the support to date. Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) is caused by a gene deletion that causes deterioration of the nerve cells connecting Livie’s brain and spinal cord to her muscles.

“There is no cure and Livie has the most severe type, so our best hope is a one-off gene treatment, currently only available in America, which costs over two million dollars. But time is not on our side and Livie is against the clock because this treatment is only available to children under two years old.

“We are still a long away from raising enough funds to pay for Livie’s treatment”. Keith said. “Once we raise the rest of the funds, we will finally be able to pay for Livie’s treatment, Zolgensma, and give our daughter the greatest chance at life. Our dream is to put 2,000,000 candles on Livie’s first birthday cake on the 26th August and get her the treatment she needs.”

When the players and management arrive at each club it will present opportunity for club members to meet, greet and take photos with the Donegal Senior Football Team. The travelling party of players and management aim to spend 10 – 15 minutes at each club, where there will be an opportunity to raise funds through a bucket collection.

To support the #teamdonegal4teamlivie campaign click here

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