Arklow RNLI is facing a 'drastic' crisis after normal fundraising activities had to be put on hold due to Covid-19 coupled with a busy summer of call-outs.
Like other charities, the local voluntary-led life-saving service has been unable to hold its usual fundraising events since March due to Covid-19. However, the organisation still has to cover its outgoings at this time. These include costs of around €1,000 each time the lifeboat is called out on a shout.
The treasurer of the Arklow RNLI fundraising branch Tony Fennell described the fundraising situation as 'drastic'.
'We effectively have had no fundraising events since the end of March. With many local pubs and restaurants closed during lockdown, people weren't throwing their loose change into donation boxes, which we hope they will continue to do,' Mr Fennell said.
'We've lost out on fundraising as have other charities'.
Other annual fundraising events such as the Maritime Festival and Mayday could not go ahead due to Covid-19 public health guidelines. Nationally, the RNLI next fundraising campaign will ask members of the public to hold a fish supper in their home during the month of October and make a donation to the charity. The independent volunteer-led organisation is also in the process of rolling out an online donation platform is also being rolled out across its nationwide network of lifeboat stations.
This year, the Arklow RNLI has been selected as one of the charities alongside NANDRI to benefit from Fr Micheal Murtagh's annual Arklow parish charity walk, which will be held at Arklow Rock on Sunday in a socially distant format.
Councillor Tommy Annesley, chair of Arklow RNLI fundraising branch, said he would encourage as many people as possible to support the upcoming walk.
'We've had no fundraising this year so it's vital for us to get as much support as we can. I'd encourage people to come out and do the walk in support of two great charities and enjoy Arklow Rock, with thanks to Roadstone for allowing us use the walk.
Mr Fennell said he is hoping that members of the community will get in touch with members of the Arklow RNLI fundraising committee if they have ideas for new and innovative ways that the local organisation could raise much-needed funds.