Epic journey completed for Disneyland dream

The young members of Tuned In are excited by the prospect of going to Disneyland.
The young members of Tuned In are excited by the prospect of going to Disneyland.

A Derry community worker has completed a 100-mile walk across Inishowen to help fund a dream trip to Disneyland for people with special needs who attend the ‘Tuned In’ project.

Former Councillor Darren O’Reilly set out on the epic walk last Friday morning from Bridgend and walked the Inishowen 100 route to Buncrana, Dunree Fort, Carndonagh, Malin Head, Kinnego, Greencastle and then back to Derry, arriving in the city on Tuesday night.

Darren is one of over 20 adults who will accompany 25 Tuned In members on their trip to Disneyland Paris in early September. Some of the group have never been on a plane or even left Ireland before.

Tuned In is a digital and creative arts project for young people and adults and is based in Springtown. A major fundraising push to cover the costs is ongoing, and Darren’s walk has so far raised around £1,000.

Speaking about his walk, Darren said: “It’s an old cliché but you see so much more on foot than you ever would driving. The scenery’s amazing, the wee fields, the old signposts, houses, burns you’d never know where there.

“It was all to raise money for the Tuned trip. Tuned In, which is a brilliant project. The young people were singing at Stendhal there at the weekend, and this week some of them got the chance to go swimming with specially adapted wheelchairs having never been in the water before.

“A lot of those going have complex needs and it was a big ask to get everything in place and it is a real credit to the staff and everybody who has weighed in behind them to get the thing in place. The children are so excited.”

To donate, go to the Facebook page: ‘Inishowen 100 for Tuned in Derry to Disney’.