While a lot of voluntary groups are finding the recession difficult, the Healthy Heart Walk Committee in Clonmel continues to meet the challenges and uses every possible innovative approach to ensure that the walk continues its successful path in helping local charities.
It was very evident last Wednesday night that community spirit and a sense of volunteerism in Clonmel is very much alive and well – in fact, perhaps it is even stronger today than what is was when the roar of the Celtic Tiger somewhat drowned out many community events.
The town and community that we are all striving to support and build should not be a revival of the Celtic Tiger. That beast is dead and gone. Never again should the desire for commodities trump the importance of community.
More than 700 people turned up to participate in the fifth Healthy Heart Walk in aid of the Society of St. Vincent De Paul. It was heartening to see the same old faces – young and old as well as new supporters, gather at the Clonmel Park Hotel and join in a sociable walk around the beautiful Marlfield Lake.
Some clubs such as the Scouts and the Swimming club gathered in solidarity and families with small children led by example by giving back to their own community and showing the next generation how important this is.
One of the marvellous things about the Healthy Heart Walk is that it welcomes everyone to help and its success is due to the pooling of community strengths such as Abbott Vascular, Gardai, Red Cross, Civil Defence, the Athletics Club, MEP Phil Prendergast, Mayor Darren Ryan, sporting hero Declan Browne and the Clonmel Park Hotel.
This sharing of work and responsibility, guarantees a great night and financial support for a local charity. As Mother Teresa said “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”
To date the Healthy Heart Walk has donated over €55,000 to local charities and it was great to see that the money collected this year has increased from last year. People are urged to send in the remaining money so that a cheque can be presented to the St. Vincent de Paul Society as soon as possible.