A GALWAY IFA fund-raising initiative for the Cancer Care West charity – spearheaded by outgoing county chairman Pat Murphy – drew a whopping 72 tables to a 25 card drive in Loughrea at the weekend and raised over €30,000.
IFA branches from all over the county sold almost 3,000 tickets at €10 a throw for the card game – for those who couldn’t make it to the Progressive 25 in the Lough Rea Hotel last Sunday night, they were automatically entered into a draw for a series of prizes.
Pat Murphy described the response to the fund-raising venture as ‘magnificent’, exceeding all expectations. “When we sat down a few weeks ago, we set ourselves what we considered an ambitious target of €10,000, but €30,000 plus has exceeded all expectations,” he said.
Along with former national IFA President and cancer survivor, John Donnelly; card game organiser, Hubert Geoghegan; Dave O’Donnell, Cancer Care West; Martin Murphy, Turloughmore and Joe Connolly, Ballinderreen, the committee set themselves a target of 50 tables for the card game.
“As well as the committee we had a massive response from many people including our own branches, various helpers along the way and also of course some very generous sponsors too.
“I was especially keen, after what was at times a tough four years to be Chairman of the IFA in Galway, to end the term on a positive note but this response from everyone just exceeded all expectations,” said Pat Murphy.
Cash prizemoney of €1,300 was paid out on Sunday night to the winners of the cards in what was one of the biggest ever games to be held in Co. Galway.
“This venture is one that IFA branches all over the county can take ownership of. I think that we had something like 70 out of 78 branches who sold tickets for the event and that’s what made it the success that it was,” said Pat Murphy.
He said that given John Donnelly’s wonderfully positive success story in successfully winning his battle with cancer, the Cancer Care West charity was always going to be the obvious ‘charity of choice’ for this event.