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Drogheda Dolls founder Natalie Kelly named an Inspirational Hero


Natalie Kelly appeared on Ireland AM to talk about her work with Drogheda Dolls.

Natalie Kelly appeared on Ireland AM to talk about her work with Drogheda Dolls.

Natalie Kelly appeared on Ireland AM to talk about her work with Drogheda Dolls.


Founder of Drogheda Dolls Natalie Kelly has been named as‘ an Inspirational Hero’ in the Gala Retail and Virgin Media Inspiration Awards.

The Drogheda woman, whose community group has raised over €100,000 for local charities and causes, joins 25 other county heroes named from the hundreds of entries received.

Each of the 26 award-winning heroes demonstrated how they have made Ireland a better place with their selfless acts and inspirational deeds during the Covid-19 crisis, and how they have gone above and beyond for others in their local community.

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"I am very very humbled to be chosen and grateful to represent not only our wee County Louth but all of Leinster too,” says Natalie. “I’ve had no idea who nominated me or why I was chosen but a huge thank you to anyone who voted for me.”

As part of her award, she appeared on Ireland AM last week, where she was interviewed by Bachelor’s Walk star Simon Delaney.

"When they rang me, I thought they said Today FM so got a shock when they told me I’d have to do my own hair and make-up. For radio, I thought?!” she says with a laugh. 

"My dad is a big fan of Simon, and wanted his autograph, and in the end, he was lovely, but there fella ahead of us ran way over so I only had two minutes to try and mention everyone, and say how fabulous Drogheda really is!”

As part of the nomination, Natalie also received a €1,000 voucher towards a holiday in an Irish hotel, but in her usual style, tried to halve it, so she could give €500 away as a prize on Drogheda Dolls.

Natalie, who has overcome her own health struggles in the past, founded community Facebook group Drogheda Dolls in 2017, with the hope of providing support and engagement between women in the town.

Four years on, and it is clear she created an unstoppable force, which not only lives up to her original goal, but also has raised in excess of €100,000 for local charities, individuals and organisations, through fundraising events and generosity.

"These type of honours are always lovely to get, but honestly, the awards are shared between all the wonderful women in the group,” she adds.