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Milestone event for fundraiser Kathleen

Kathleen Gracey has been throwing open the gates of her home for some ten years now in aid of the NI Children's Hospice. (c) drewmcwilliams.com INBL18-605dmcw

Kathleen Gracey has been throwing open the gates of her home for some ten years now in aid of the NI Children's Hospice. (c) drewmcwilliams.com INBL18-605dmcw

Dromore woman Kathleen Gracey is pulling out all the stops to mark this, the 10th

anniversary of her

home-grown charity

fundraiser.

In the decade since she threw open the surrounds of her Villawood Road home to the annual Fun Day and Car-Boot Sale, Kathleen has raised more than £13,000 for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice.

Kathleen has always stressed her gratitude for even the smallest amount raised.

“If we get £1, then we get £1 and we’ll be grateful for it,” she has repeatedly said, though she has done considerably better than that.

In 2007 she raised £1,650; in 2008, despite poor weather, she still managed to raise £1,000; in 2009, the total was £1,035; in 2010 it was more than double that amount - £2,395.

Long since firmly established as a local favourite, the event has evolved over the years, first taking in a poultry fair and later including an associated sponsored walk.

This year, Kathleen is aiming to stage 10 separate fundraising events, one for each year since she first launched her charity cash campaign.

So far, plans are in the pipeline for a table quiz and Kathleen has also compiled a cook-book she means to sell to further boost takings.

In the meantime, Saturday, May 3 is the date for this year’s Fun Day and Car-Boot sale at 32 Villawood Road.

The event will run from 10am-3pm.

There will be the usual mix of attractions, from the bouncy castle for kids to the many bargains sure to be on offer, with refreshments - soup, stew etc - also available.

“We try our best to entertain everyone,” said Kathleen.

As always, the cost for cars is £5, for vans, £10.

Admission to the public is free.

An added attraction this year is a display of vintage motorcycles and anyone who would like to add their machine to the existing line-up is asked to call Kathleen on 077 2486 9080.

“Anyone interested is welcome to come along,” she said.

As of last year Kathleen had raised £13,270 for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice and she is hoping this year’s event will be the biggest and best yet.

Later in the month, on Friday, May 30, Kathleen will stage her annual sponsored walk along a five-mile stretch of the Villawood Road.

All proceeds from her events will go to the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice and Kathleen is calling on everyone to go along and enjoy themselves in a good cause.

 

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