27 May 2022

An ‘extraordinary week’ for Lavey community

Their 'Lavey5000' campaign was a huge success.

A County Derry community has raised thousands towards the restoration of the parish chapel, while travelling more than 10,000km in total.

Lavey Parish pooled their energies to raise almost £20,000 to contribute to the recent work on St Mary’s Church of Our Lady of Mercy.

Parish priest Fr Eamon Graham was delighted to see the community coming together.

“We've just come to end of a very extraordinary week in our parish and community,” he said.

“I've certainly been overwhelmed - I think we all have - by the level of generosity, but I think something even more important was that so many aspects of our community pulled together.

“You know, we enjoyed it, enjoyed it very much.  At the end of the lockdown period I think we were all, kind of, looking for a lift of some kind and it certainly gave us all a great lift.

“I want to say a sincere thanks to everybody who was involved - everybody who was at the organising end of it, and particularly to the groups that took part.”

The fundraiser received huge community support, with local sports clubs in the area all taking on a specific challenge to help with the chapel’s restoration.

Erin’s Own GAA’s underage footballers and hurlers ran 5km each, while their senior counterparts ran a collective 500km.

Termoneeny Hill Walking Club had originally pledged to walk a collective 300km, but upped their target to 1,000km during the course of their challenge.

Termoneeny Cycling Club members each cycled 100km, while the Erin’s Own camogie players each clocked up at least 5km.

73-year-old Harry Boyle’s remarkable contribution saw him cycling around all the townlands in the parish, while Fr Graham and his parochial team got involved by running in their Lavey gear.

The challenge was not just limited to Lavey, though, and their diaspora throughout the world got involved via social media, sharing photos of them completing their contribution.

The club have raised almost £20,000 to date and donations can still be made via the Lavey Parish Just Giving page.

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