SPECIAL Olympics is encouraging people from Tyrone and Mid-Uster to help raise £30,000 of vital funds throughout May as part of its annual Collection Day campaign.
The fundraising target is needed to enable the charity to continue its support of more than 1,200 children and adults living with an intellectual disability across Northern Ireland.
For the second year running, the Special Olympics annual Collection Day campaign, which culminates on May 28th, will go virtual in response to Covid-19.
Rory Mullan, 29, from Dungannon, is encouraging locals to donate £4 by texting Athlete to 70085 or by visiting cantstopnow.ie to make a donation or organise a virtual fundraising event.
Rory Mullan has been a member of Eagles Special Olympics Club for more than a decade and turned to virtual training programmes back in March 2020, after all face-to-face club activity was put on hold.
A keen swimmer and athletics enthusiast, Rory found solace in online Zumba classes hosted by his local club volunteers to help him cope with the change to his lifestyle brought about by the pandemic.
Sean Mullan, Rory’s dad, credits Special Olympics for keeping his son motivated and supported throughout both the pandemic and the past decade.
He said: “Rory was around 16 when he first became involved with Eagles Special Olympics Club; the improvement to his emotional wellbeing was transformative.
“Pre-covid, Rory was out every night, either swimming or participating in a different activity, so it was big shock to the system when the pandemic brought everything to a halt. He struggled to adapt to the online meet-ups that the club was organising, but we persevered and eventually he started to enjoy them.
“The head coach at the club, Paul, has been brilliant at keeping them all motivated.”
For more information, or to get involved, visit www.cantstopnow.ie.