Pictured at the (socially distanced) launch were Aoife Waldron, Sarah O’Suilleabhain and Emma May
A Limerick man is calling on people across the city and county to go the distance and register to do a virtual GOAL Mile this Christmas to support the world’s most vulnerable communities.
The appeal is being made after GOAL announced the traditional and much-loved GOAL Mile will be going virtual this year due to Covid-19 restrictions.
In recent years thousands of people from all over Limerick have turned out in their communities and parishes every Christmas to walk, run or jog a GOAL Mile, with funds raised going towards supporting GOAL’s work in 13 countries in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.
According to Gus Ahern, who has been a GOAL Mile organiser for 15 years, it is more vital than ever that people support the GOAL Mile this year.
"Whilst this Christmas we are all being asked to keep apart due to Covid-19, we can still stand together for GOAL by registering to complete a virtual GOAL Mile. Whether it’s a run, walk, swim, or cycle, I want people across Limerick to join me to travel a mile.”
Gus first go involved with GOAL in the 1990’s. He made two volunteering visits to Kolkatta in India and saw first hand the work that GOAL does.
“This inspired me to help GOAL out after seeing the lifesaving services GOAL provides to the worlds poorest communities.”
In addition to the GOAL Mile Gus, a businessman, has helped the organisation raise thousands of euros and donated much of his time and money where he could.
He added: “This year GOAL is hoping to get at least 10,000 people all over Ireland to register to do a GOAL mile, and I would love to see Limerick proudly play its part as it does every year. “
Each registration will count as one mile. And according to Gus once people have registered they have the option of passing a virtual baton to challenge friends on social media to do likewise
GOAL’s Director of Fundraising Eamon Sharkey added: “We are living in a totally different world to the one we were in last Christmas. Covid-19 has taken a grip and changed all of our lives, but sadly it is the most vulnerable communities around the world who are impacted most, with Covid-19 impacting on their livelihoods and access to food. However, Despite Covid-19 we are determined that this great tradition will continue and we can all do our GOAL Mile virtually."
Depending on what happens following the easing of Level 5 restrictions, families and small groups of people may be able to do it together once Government guidelines and social distancing is strictly observed. This year will be different - but the end result will be the same.
To register click here
The cost is €15 for an adult and €10 for a child. There is also an early bird option for those who register before November 24.