Cycle Club take on charity challenge

Published 16/01/2014 | 05:26

A LOCALLY based cycling team will take on the 659km Malin to Mizen Cycle Challenge from August 6-10 in aid of St. Joseph's Foundation, Charleville.

A LOCALLY based cycling team will take on the 659km Malin to Mizen Cycle Challenge from August 6-10 in aid of St. Joseph's Foundation, Charleville.

The challenge was launched in Granagh, Co. Limerick Community Hall last Saturday night, with the event being hosted by the Granagh Development Association.

Sixty-five cyclists from the Team Dave Riordan Cycling Club will set out to complete the gruelling cycle over five days with the aim of raising enough money to purchase a horse riding simulator for use by service users of St. Joseph's Foundation with Autistic Spectrum Disorder at their new farm, which is located in the townland of Liskennet in the parish of Granagh in the heart of the Golden Vale.

The cycling club was formed last February by members of the Riordan family in remembrance of their brother, Dave Riordan of Cregane, Charleville who, sadly, died of cancer in 2012. Launching the five day cycling challenge, Maurice Riordan said his brother, Dave, was an inspirational character who touched the lives of all who knew him, and was a keen cycling enthusiast.

"Our aim is to raise funds for as many local charities as possible while keeping fit and having fun along the way and to date we have raised €130,000," said Maurice.

"The latest challenge, from Malin to Mizen is the biggest the team has taken on to date and the cyclists are eagerly looking forward to the event." said Mr. Riordan.

Each cyclist will cover their own expenses and, in addition, will have to raise €500 in sponsorship to participate in the cycle.

The simulator they are aiming to fund will be of immense benefit to all service users of all ages, both with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and other intellectual disabilities. The aim of the simulator is to introduce them to equine therapy thus enabling them to develop physically, emotionally and cognitively.

Service users will be able to ride in a controlled manner and for many it will be a stepping stone to actual horse riding.

The Liskennet Farm was purchased by St. Joseph's Foundation to fulfil the need for a specific service for a growing number of people with Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

The land was bought with the help of grants from the J. P. McManus Adare Golf Pro-Am Competition and grants from the HSE and Limerick County Council and other charitable donations.

The first phase of development of residential units is presently underway and these are expected to be ready for occupation in early summer.

Corkman

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