GAA clubs eager to help communities

By Cian O'Connell

GAA clubs throughout the country are responding quickly to the Covid 19 pandemic.

There will be no on field action until the end of the March, at the earliest, but several clubs are seeking to assist those in need.

In Meath, Dunderry GAA and Flanagans shop are offering a delivery service for elderly people and those at risk.

Dunderry GAA secretary Paddy Darcy explains how the club is eager to provide a valuable service. "In fairness it was one of our club members' idea, it wasn't my idea - Michael Keaveney gave me a shout about it and it was his brainchild," Darcy says.

"We are a rural club in County Meath sandwiched between Trim and Navan. It is very community focused, no more than any other parish, the GAA club really sits in the heart of the community.

"We saw it as a chance to give a little back to the more vulnerable members of the community, who have given a lot to the club over the years. We felt it was the right thing to do.

"It is very much in its infancy, neighbours are rowing in at the moment, but it is there and we are only at the start of this Covid 19 really.

"It is the GAA, Camogie, and LGFA clubs are all coming together, giving a dig out where we can."

No GAA pitch activity will take place until March 29, at the earliest.
No GAA pitch activity will take place until March 29, at the earliest.

Derry's Eoghan Rua, Meath's Drumconrath and St Colmcilles are just some of the clubs, who have commenced projects seeking to benefit others.

Naomh Máirtín in Monasterboice are adopting a similar approach to the crisis.

Healthy Club Officer Linda Donoghue acknowledges that Naomh Mairtin are ready and willing to help anybody requiring assistance with deliveries.

"We are in a rural area, but from the Healthy Club initiative we've been involved with the community," Donoghue states.

"We just want to help as many people as we can. Even though the club is closed, the facilities are closed, but there is still people willing to help.

"The key for us is that it is for members and non members. Some people might think they aren't involved in the GAA, but we are there for everyone.

"We will have a core group. We have our Health and Wellbeing committee and others who can help. We mightn't get many requests, but it is really that it is out there. When times were tough people will know that Naomh Máirtín were willing to help."

In these demanding times such spirit and determination is becoming evident all over Ireland.