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Author and social media star among volunteers awarded by Concern
One of Ireland’s top vloggers and authors was among those honoured at the Concern Volunteer Awards on Saturday after she raised over €9,000 for people in Afghanistan.
Melanie Murphy, a bestselling author and YouTube star with over 850,000 social media followers, received the Fundraising Newcomer Award for her efforts at a ceremony in the Dublin office of the humanitarian organisation Concern Worldwide.
“I feel deeply honoured to receive Concern’s fundraising newcomer award for raising over €9,000 in a week via Instagram stories towards survival kits for people in Afghanistan,” said Ms Murphy.
“Evidently, I wasn’t the only person moved to act by the images of a little baby being passed over a wall to U.S troops outside the Kabul airport.
“This award will serve as a reminder to me of the power that we all have to really help others in need through social media. It isn’t all filters and fluff.
“When a charity like Concern makes it so easy to donate, people will do the right thing if the ability to help is put right in front of them.”
Melanie was one of 31 people or groups honoured by Concern at their annual event, which celebrates the vital contribution made by the charity’s 1,500 volunteers in Ireland.
Ulster Unionist Party councillor and former police officer, Alex Swan, was also among the volunteers awarded for their help adjudicating in the all-island Concern Debates competition that primary and secondary schools participate in.
Concern’s Chief Executive, Dominic MacSorley, praised the organisation’s volunteers for helping them to continue to reach the world’s most vulnerable people in countries like Ukraine, Afghanistan, Syria and Ethiopia.
“We are deeply grateful to all our volunteers and donors for their continued support, especially in these difficult times,” said Mr MacSorley.
“Whether it’s through fundraising walks or climbs, shaking a bucket or adjudicating school debates, the commitment of Concern volunteers has kept a flame of compassion alive in communities across Ireland at a time when the need has never been greater in many parts of the world.
“The war in Ukraine has caused a devastating humanitarian crisis, but Irish people have responded with compassion and generosity to the needs of people who have had to flee from their homes.
“Tragically, this war is taking place at a time of already surging humanitarian need, where drought is devastating the Horn of Africa, and millions of people around the world are suffering the consequences of poverty, conflict and climate change.
“I want to thank all of the volunteers, donors, teachers and Concern Debates adjudicators and everyone around the country who provides a key link between the Irish public and the people in need of assistance at this challenging moment in time.”`
Other Concern volunteers awarded yesterday included Sean Brogan from Butlersbridge, Cavan, whose fundraising group collected in excess of €140,000 over 23 years to support the charity’s work.
Concern’s Volunteer Awards began in 2013 to celebrate the vital contribution made by the organisation’s volunteers in Ireland.
Many raise funds that enable Concern to alleviate poverty and hunger for millions of people in 25 of the world’s poorest countries.
More information about Concern’s work can be found on its website www.concern.net.
For media queries, please contact Kevin Jenkinson at email@example.com
List of awardees who said they would attend
Volunteer Debates Awardees
- Nicola Carruthers
- Rebekah Corbett
- Mark Francos
- Ita Ward
- Peadar O’Lamhna
- Breege Doherty
- Deirdre Toomey
- Aidan O’Gormain
- Mary-Kate Flanagan
- Patricia Cronin
- Eimear Trainor
- Patsy Toland
- Patrick Huff
- Deirdre Lanigan
- Eimear Cregg
- Vincent Coyne
Volunteer Fundraising Award
- James McGroary
Volunteer Fundraising Teacher Award
- Aishling Mulherin of Rockwell College Tipperary
Fundraising School Award
- Noel McConnel for the Holy Family Community School Rathcoole
Volunteer Fundraising Newcomer Award
- Melanie Murphy from Dublin who is a best-selling author and successful vlogger
Volunteer Outstanding Commitment Award
- Sean Brogan from Cavan
- Eamon Coyle from Roscommon, lives in Dublin
- Alma Finnerty
- Brendan McGurgan for the Randalstown Support Group
- Kathleen Flanagan
- Donie Conway
- Finbarr O’Sullivan
All-Island Debates Shield Champions 2021-2022
- Debating team from Sandford Park School
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