Baby Sarah Barrett pictured with her mother Claire, brothers Charlie and Conor and father Jason at home in Portnoo
As a birthday present, it was some haul for young Sarah as over €8,100 has been raised by the fundraising walk last Thursday, leaving her Carrick-on-Shannon mother speechless with gratitude.
“Sarah’s Journey”, a fundraising walk in aid of the National Maternity Hospital Foundation and the Neonatal Unit in Letterkenny University Hospital, was launched by Claire O’Donnell to mark the first birthday of daughter Sarah who was born on April 22, 2020.
The fundraising initiative came after Sarah’s mother Claire was rushed to hospital last year when her waters broke after just 24 weeks. A ten week stay in the National Maternity Hospital with no visitors allowed due to Covid-19 regulations followed before Sarah arrived on April 22, 2020 safe and sound.
To say thanks, Claire and her husband Jason and children Charlie & Conor decided to mark Sarah’s birthday with a fundraising walk for the two hospitals that were so vital to ensuring Sarah’s safe arrival into the world.
That took place last Thursday with the aim of walking the 480 kms journey from Sarah’s home in Portnoo, Co Donegal to the National Maternity Hospital and back again.
And it is safe to say that a lot more kilometres were walked than was needed, with walkers not only in Donegal and Carrick-on-Shannon but in Canada and Australia too!
Writing on her Facebook page, Claire said “I don't really know where to begin! What a day! Like everyone else in the country right now we couldn't celebrate Sarah's first birthday properly with our families. By having our fundraiser today we did feel like everyone was celebrating with us.
"We have just clocked up the KMs and as they currently stand we are at 843.3km!! Slightly over our target of 480km!!! We will leave the gofundme page open until Monday.”
The whole family got involved with the fundraising effort with the pupils from the school attended by Sarah’s brothers Charlie and Conor walking 201.4 km with Claire writing “We got word last night of the massive amount of km walked by Charlie and Conor's school mates yesterday which was a total of 201.4km, bringing our total distance to 1044.7km. Thanks so much to everyone at St Conal's National school, Kilclooney, for marking the occasion.”
At the time of going to press, “Sarah’s Journey” had raised an amazing €8,165. The page is due to close soon and you can still donate at https://gofund.me/2f9e2c5f