Monday 18 November 2019

Heroic response from knitters sees hundreds of capes donated to babies spending their first Halloween in the Rotunda

Some capes that were knitted for children in the Rotunda
Some capes that were knitted for children in the Rotunda
Aoife Walsh

Aoife Walsh

Hundreds of knitted capes from all over Ireland have been donated to babies being cared in the Rotunda hospital as they approach their first Halloween.

Martina Duffy (50), from Beaumont, Co Dublin, appealed for knitted capes for babies in the Rotunda Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) this Halloween. 

The Rotunda Knitters & Crocheters Facebook page, which is run by Martina, posted the request last month.

Since then, she has received hundreds of knitted capes from all over Ireland.

“I run the Rotunda knitters Facebook page, which mostly just shows what people have made and all that,” she told Independent.ie.

“We had some capes for Halloween, and I just wanted some more. I put a call out saying can anyone make a few more of these.

Martina Duffy of the Rotunda Knitters & Crocheters
Martina Duffy of the Rotunda Knitters & Crocheters

“We were hoping to get 60 capes - and I’d say we got five or six times that,” she said.

“Even though there’s 12,000 people who like the page, the interaction is the same, 100 people all the time. I wasn’t really expecting it, it just seemed to be shared far and wide. The capes came in from all over the country.

“They came from Cork, Kerry, Wexford, Galway, Mayo, everywhere. I’d say there’s not a county in Ireland that they haven’t come from.

“You can never anticipate when something is going to go viral, the internet is a funny thing like that. The capes got picked up and went everywhere,” she added.

“It’s fantastic. The messages I get, a lot of them would be private and they don’t want them shared and that’s fine because their babies are very ill. But last year, some of the parents sent us photos to put online of the babies in the capes," she said.

"On Halloween, parents will come in and there'll be a photo of their baby on the incubator in a little superhero cape saying 'My first Halloween I was Superman'."

Some capes that were knitted for children in the Rotunda
Some capes that were knitted for children in the Rotunda

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