Tuesday 17 September 2019

Kilbrin gets behind ACT Meningitis awareness drive

Sheila Fitzgerald

Although the tables were groaning with all manner of delicious cakes and goodies at the ACT for Meningitis fundraiser in Kilbrin last Sunday, the icing on the cake for the Heffernan and Clifford Families was to have their beautiful daughters Eimear and Chloe healthy and well, and with them on the day.

Both girls are Meningitis survivors with Eimear contracting the disease in March 2017 and Chloe in January of this year. Mums Liz Heffernan and Anne Maria Clifford put their heads together and organised the fundraiser as a thank you to the ACT for Meningitis organisation for the help they received while going through their respective traumas. "When we were in the depths of dealing with Meningitis and felt we hadn't anyone to turn to for help or guidance, we got massive support from ACT for Meningitis. They have great resources and are always at the end of the phone when needed," Liz told The Corkman.

"Our girls had very different symptoms, Eimear had stomach bug symptoms while Chloe had a pain at the back of her eye. What we are trying to highlight here is that the indicators of the disease can be very different," she said. Anne Maria Clifford said that the main aim of the fundraiser was to raise awareness.  "If you are not sure what's wrong and you're not happy with the diagnosis, trust your instincts and go back to the doctor or hospital. If you have to go back ten times it doesn't matter" Anne Maria said.

Both women said they were absolutely delighted with the support they received for their fundraiser, both in the preparation stages and at the actual event on Sunday.

"We were thrilled with the turn out today, the fantastic support, great sponsorship, great baking and the wonderful community spirit on show," said Liz. ACT for Meningitis was set up in 2011 by Siobhan and Noel Carroll following the tragic loss of their daughter Aoibhe, aged just four  to Meningitis.  Over the past eight years, through self-fundraising, ACT has provided free support services to children, adults, families and communities in 22 counties through it's unique Meningitis Community Care Programme. Wherever you are in the country, if you have been affected by meningitis either through bereavement or living with the severe after affects of the disease, ACT will provide free support services and therapies tailored to your needs, within your own community and without a waiting list.  ACT can be reached at 091 380058 or at