Seal Stride sees 117kms walked by Seal Rescue

A successful seal release earlier this year - the recent 117km Seal Stride raised funds to help Seal Rescue Ireland continue its work

Cathy LeeGorey Guardian

Staff at Seal Rescue Ireland and their supporters across the country have been keeping active during the month of September as they took on the 'Seal Stride' 117km challenge.

Brain-child of intern Amy Dodd, inspiration for the challenge came from the fact that a total of 117 seals were rescued by the charity last year.

'I've been running for ten years and have taken part in a lot of charity fundraisers like running races and marathons. Due to the Covid-19 restrictions, we couldn't organise a massive run for people to take part altogether at once but we had interest in this from all over the country. We were delighted to get people involved and track their own kilometres but tie it in to the fact that Seal Rescue Ireland is down 88% of funds compared to last year.

'There was a core team of eleven staff as well as members of the public and our volunteer network nationwide. Every was running a personal fundraising campaign with their own online pages and it was really re-imagined during this really difficult time. I tried by best to run the whole thing,' she said.

Each participant ran, walked or jogged the total 117 kilometres and Jeshua Taucher of Seal Rescue Ireland said that knowing that every kilometre marked a saved individual seal made it especially rewarding.

'We've been encouraging people enjoy their own back yard and this gave us the chance to explore the Wexford walking trails, and that resource was so valuable. We were absolutely blown away by the support on the back of this difficult time, and we have to say thank you because people have really come forward and shown camaraderie and force. It enhances everything that we are doing and makes it run smoothly but it's just another testament to growing amount of support we have in the community here in Wexford,' he said.

If anyone would like to do a similar challenge to support the charity, they can find information on in the 'How to Help' section.

To make a final donation to the 'Seal Stride', search under the heading 'Fundraisers' on Seal Rescue Ireland's Facebook page.

A video reel of the challenge will be shared at a later date.