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Order of Malta ambulance heading to Chernobyl

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PRESENTATION: Anna Nesterova (Candle for Grace) accepts the keys of an ambulance from Joe Looney (Killarney Order of Malta).

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By Sean Moriarty

 

An Order of Malta ambulance that served its time in Killarney is on its way to Chernobyl where it will enjoy a new lease of life.

The fully kitted out ambulance, which is surplus to requirements locally after a former a HSE ambulance replaced it, will now be used by hospitals in the Chernobyl area.

A Mayo-based charity called Candle of Grace organises the collection of much needed medical supplies to be used by local health facilities and orphanages near Chernobyl.

Throughout 2020 the Order of Malta Units based in Limerick, Nenagh and Thurles aided Candle of Grace with this collection.

During this process it was realised that there was a shortage of ambulances in the area and two end-of-life vehicles – one each in Killarney and Cashel – were identified and handed over just before Christmas.

Candle of Grace is now in the process of delivering them to Chernobyl.

"It is great to see surplus but still serviceable medical equipment given a new lease of life where it is most needed. It is anticipated that both of these ex-frontline vehicles can be put to good use to the people of the Chernobyl region in early 2021. A number of years ago our Killarney Unit facilitated a similar vehicle donation and we are delighted to help once again,” said the Order of Malta’s Assistant Commander Tony O’Mara.

Both vehicles laden with additional medical supplies, collected and donated by the Nenagh, Thurles and Limerick units of the Ambulance Corps, will be driven to the Chernobyl area by Candle of Grace volunteers in the coming days.

“We had a 2011 ambulance but it was in great condition and we really needed to find another home for it,” Joe Looney, Order of Malta – Killarney’s deputy officer in charge, told the Killarney Advertiser.

The Killarney branch will in turn take charge of a former NHS ambulance as the national fleet gets updated to modern vehicles.

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NPWS survey to find out impact of fires

By Michelle Crean The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has commissioned a comprehensive survey on the impact of fires over the past four decades – in particular Killarney National Park in April. The tender, worth €300,000, and named ‘Study on the Impact of Fires On The Biodiversity of Killarney National Park’, seeks to find […]

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By Michelle Crean

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has commissioned a comprehensive survey on the impact of fires over the past four decades – in particular Killarney National Park in April.

The tender, worth €300,000, and named ‘Study on the Impact of Fires On The Biodiversity of Killarney National Park’, seeks to find out the biological impacts of the fires in the 26,000 acre park.

The fires in April burned from Friday night on April 23 until around 12pm the following Monday when they were finally brought under control.

Parts of the Park were scorched resulting in flora and fauna being wiped out. Some fires came as close as 10 metres to a church and school in the Black Valley area.

Fires raged near Tomies Wood and fire crews from five different districts quenched fires near the properties under threat. A real threat was for The Oak Woods but fire fighters managed to avert danger.

The fire is believed to have begun on the Kenmare Road area escalated by the strong winds.

“The purpose of this tender is to commission a comprehensive survey of the impacts, and the chrono-sequence of fire recovery or otherwise, on lands burned over the past four decades, as well as surveys in unburned areas, in order to assess the biological impacts of the fires, in particular the fire of April 2021, on the biodiversity of Killarney National Park,” an NPWS spokesperson told the Killarney Advertiser.

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Killarney spin will bring comfort to patients

By Michelle Crean Ahead of this year’s ladies only 54321 Challenge a number of spinathons are taking place, including in Killarney town. Sunday, August 15 a group of 10 ladies plan a spinathon day in Killarney ahead of their four day epic adventure from Thursday, August 19 to Sunday 22. This year due to COVID […]

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By Michelle Crean

Ahead of this year’s ladies only 54321 Challenge a number of spinathons are taking place, including in Killarney town.

Sunday, August 15 a group of 10 ladies plan a spinathon day in Killarney ahead of their four day epic adventure from Thursday, August 19 to Sunday 22.

This year due to COVID restrictions the 54321 team will run with two teams of five people, all female – who are raising funds for one single charity – Comfort for Chemo Kerry.

Their four day challenge will include a cycle the Ring of Kerry on day one (Thursday 19), a climb up Carrantuohil on day two (Friday 20), a cycle from Killarney to the foot of Cnoc Na Tobair and then climb Cnoc Na Tobair on day three (Saturday 21) finishing off with a cycle of the Skellig Ring on day four (Sunday 22).

In advance of the ninth annual challenge they will first participate in the spinathons at various locations to help raise much needed funds for this year’s chosen charity.

The first of the spinathons will take place on Saturday, July 31 in Listowel, Killorglin, Dingle, Cahersiveen. On the day volunteers will take to the spinning bikes from 10am to 5pm in different locations around these towns.
This will be followed by Killarney on Sunday, August 15, and Tralee on Saturday, August 28.

When choosing this year’s charity, organisers contacted a past participant and a dear friend, Mairead Dunphy from Glencar who is currently on her own journey with cancer.

“We wanted to show our support to Mairead and knowing that she would like to support those who have supported her on her journey so far, she had already being looking at ideas to raise much needed funds for Comfort for Chemo Kerry,” TJ O’Connor said.

“Please support Comfort for Chemo Kerry by giving what you can.”

For more information about the spinathons go to www.54321challenge.org or the Comfort for Chemo Kerry Facebook page for online donation information.

There’s also a GoFundMe page: ‘Comfort for Chemo Kerry – 54321 Challenge 2021’ which has a €20,000 target set up.

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