A daring pensioner has embarked on a massive challenge for charity this Christmas.
Paddy Conaghan, who lives on Arranmore Island, will be ducking and diving his way around the chilly waters of Ireland over the festive period to raise money for Gemma’s Legacy of Hope.
Paddy is 80 years young, but his love of fitness and thirst for adventure has never dulled.
His challenge got underway on Saturday last. Paddy took his first swim at Athport beach on Arranmore, raising almost €500 in one day. Over the coming weeks he’ll travel all around the coast of Ireland, ducking and diving in every port/beach he comes to.
He will continue all the way through the festive season until he reaches his final destination.
He’s braving the elements for a hugely important local cause (click here to donate). Gemma’s Legacy of Hope, set up in honour of Burtonport woman Gemma Boyle, is a local counselling service that helps children from the age of 5, young adults and adults across the life course in the Rosses.
Elaine Barney Boyle, who is helping Paddy promote his fundraiser, said: “Paddy has been training all year for this, he has swam everyday since the 1st January in all kinds of weather and is well able for the challenge. He bought a van & all the equipment he needs, so he is ready to go, exciting times ahead.
“Gemma’s legacy of Hope is an amazing service on our doorstep. Covid has had an impact on all of us, and we will not see the true effect it has had for a number of years yet. More than ever, mental health needs to be promoted & this service greatly needs our help to continue its incredible work.”
To support Paddy, please visit his GoFundMe fundraising page: https://gofund.me/c7b4e360
For updates on Paddy’s quest, follow the Gemma’s Legacy of Hope page on Facebook.