Last Thursday a team of cyclists commenced a demanding four-day 600km charity cycle that took them through all the counties of Munster.
For the second time in a row, Down Syndrome Ireland (DSI) was selected as the beneficiary of the Tour de Munster with last years event raising a staggering €250,000 for the charity.
Day one’s route commenced in Cork and travelled through Tipperary Town on the way to Killaloe. Spectators in Tipperary witnessed the spectacular site of 145 Tour de Munster cyclists pause to make a brief pit stop in the market square before continuing on their four-day journey all in aid of charity for the Munster branches of Down Syndrome Ireland.
This year is Down Syndrome Irelands 40th Anniversary and Tour de Munster organier Paul Sheridan who took part in the event stated the following; “We talk about people with special needs but in DSI we’ve found people with very special abilities. The ability to make us feel very special by supporting them and helping to raise funds for vital therapy and training. We’re privileged to be working with Down Syndrome Ireland again this year and with the help of the great people of Munster we are very hopeful that we’ll honour the hope which these people have placed in all of us.”
It is estimated that there are approximately 7,000 people in Ireland with Down Syndrome with one baby out of every 546 births being born with Down Syndrome. Children with Down Syndrome have an increased risk of certain health issues including; Congenital heart defects, susceptibility to infection, hearing, vision, thyroid and respiratory problems and obstructive digestive and neurological problems and leukemia. The life expectancy of persons with Down syndrome is increasing, thus, the importance of life-long living and learning needs to be supported by such charitable events as the Tour de Munster.
“We are very grateful to the many companies who got behind the Tour with generous donations - all of which go to DSI Munster Branches,” said Paul Sheridan.
Bucket collections were held along the route and the Co. Tipperary Branch would like to thank all those in Tipperary for their generous support on the day. They would also like to thank the Town Council who very kindly granted permission for the cyclists to make their stop in the Market Yard and the Garda who provided an escort through the town. For more information or to make an online donation visit: www.downsyndrome.ie