The response to a call for Derry people to make donations to aid the plight of people in Gaza has been “overwhelming” according to one young volunteer who helped organise collections.
18-year-old Padraig Delargy was behind spearheading a campaign in Derry to collect toys and clothes for children in the beleaugered Gaza strip. Padraig said the inspiration to hold a collection in the city came from Turf Lodge Co-ordinating Appeal North and the material will eventually be taken to the Middle East on a cargo ship by the non govermental organisation, Human Appeal International.
“We were looking for clothes and toys for children up to age of 16. What we actually received was bicycles, prams, cots, moses baskets, shoes all in brand new condition.
“The amount of goods we have received has been so huge we have had to hire a 40 foot lorry to take all this stuff to Belfast. It will then go to Dublin and will be all shipped out within a few weeks to Gaza,” said Padraig.
Whilst Padraig was based at the Gasyard collection point, other collection areas were at St Eugene’s Cathedral and at Hillcrest House in The Waterside. The collectin ended on Tuesday and the container left for Belfast on Wednesday morning.
Padraig Delargy thanked all those at the Gasyard who helped out in anyway as well as the Bogside and Brandywell Health Forum as well as all the organisations based at the Gasyard as well. He also paid tribute to the GAA in the city and in particular Na Piarsaigh Doire Trasna who he said had been “phenomenal” in organising contributions.
“Each GAA jersey sent reveals the solidarity from each and every club in Derry. The collection only ran for a week but the donations were huge. I suppose people have been motivated by what they have seen, like the young boys being killed on the beach, UNB facilities being bombed. We decided we had to do someting practical,” Padraig said.
Another volunteer, Catherine Hutton said: “Having never done anything like this before, as a mother seeing those children being murdered, watching the slaughter and people being abandoned and the injustice of it, I wanted to do something but didn’t know what that was until I saw this project and then I became involved it in order to try and help.”