SLIDESHOW: Limerick communities join together as one to help bring Dáithi Lawless home from hospital

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

A TREASURE hunt took place last Saturday evening for a treasured little boy.

The event is part of the Rise4Dáithí campaign to help get Dáithí Lawless home to his friends and family in Cush, Martinstown.

In April, the 10-year-old was involved in a “devastating road accident” near his home while cycling his bike.

The Rise4Dáithí campaign and a GoFundMe page was started to help pay for renovations to his homestead and suitable transportation up and down to Dublin where he is currently in hospital.

The treasure hunt in cars was put together by Fran Stone and could not have gone better, said Jack O’Shea, of the Rise4Dáithí committee.

“There was a great turnout with the first entries departing the starting point of Blackrock GAA grounds at 6.30pm. Everyone received a starter pack with two pages of instructions and questions. The route took everyone from Kilfinane, out towards Cush, Martinstown, Ballinvreena, and Elton, finishing back at the starting point.

“There was a mixture of directional challenges and observational challenges along the route. The final stop was Blackrock GAA grounds to drop off the completed sheets. The event was excellently put together and was a great family event with most cars consisting of adults and kids and the feedback was 100% positive with people commenting that it was a great family fun evening and that it was so enjoyable,” said Jack.

He said since the Rise4Dáithí Facebook page and GoFundMe page were set-up they have been inundated with messages by email, through Facebook messenger, and calls full of positivity and well wishes.

“It has been truly humbling to see the outpouring of goodwill for Dáithí, his family and for the fundraiser we have set up. With the GoFundMe page just two-weeks-old, we have seen donations surpass €32,000 at the time of writing. This is an amazing amount of money and on behalf of the Lawless family and the Rise4Dáithí fundraising committee, we would like to express our sincere thank you to everyone,” said Jack.

Dáithí remains in St Gabriel’s Ward in Temple Street as he continues his long difficult journey but continues to “amaze everyone with his warrior-like attitude and determination”.

“Although the road to home is going to be long and difficult, there is so much hope when we see how he is progressing with his intensive rehab. Dáithí is now able to operate his entertainment screen and is showing remarkable determination in his skills to communicate. Recently the family were able to wheel him out into the gardens for some much-needed fresh air and for him to feel the breeze in his hair and the sun on his face. It is the little things that we all take for granted that make a massive difference in the most difficult of situations,” said Jack.

With the occupational therapist home visit now completed, they are awaiting the report to determine the extent of renovations needed to Dáithí’s home to accommodate his eagerly awaited homecoming.

“All monies raised through the GoFundMe and events will be used for these renovations and to source suitable transport for Dáithí’s journey to and from Dún Laoghaire for the months and years to come.

“We are so grateful and thankful for all the support the family and ourselves have received and continue to receive from work colleagues and neighbours. Thank you to everyone who has helped us get to this point and who have joined us as we take the journey with Dáithí to the ultimate goal of bringing this little warrior home.

“In particular, the family would like to thank St Gobnaits Nursing Home, Ballyagran, all the staff in the HSE in Tipperary, the staff in Dunnes Stores and Tesco, all who have been so supportive. The family would also like to thank Fr Chris O’Donnell for keeping Dáithí in his prayers as he has done since April during his daily masses and night prayers live on Facebook. This has been a major source of comfort to Dáithí and his family,” said Jack.

The treasure hunt was the first in a series of fundraisers. He thanked Fran Stone for all the work she put into the event and to the sponsors of the prizes: €50 voucher Spruce and Willow; €40 voucher from Harry Murphy at Murphy's Shop; €30 voucher at Mike Hayes Interiors. A total of €390 was collected.

The next event is a schools “Wear your Jersey Day for Dáithí” on September 25.

“We will continue to drive this fundraising initiative until we achieve our goals and all updates and details of events can be found on our Facebook page Rise4Dáithí,” said Jack. Search Rise4Daithi on GoFundMe to donate.