When we’re choosing CSR projects, we like to do things that our staff can get involved in, rather than merely just making a donation. We thought it would be nice to engage in an outdoor activity some weekend and so the Wicklow Walking Festival which was being organised by Special Olympics really appealed to us.
Special Olympics Ireland is a sports organisation for people with an intellectual disability and has changed the lives of thousands of people. One Special Olympics athlete who was taking part in the walk, Fiona, spoke of how much it had brought to her life:
“I got involved with Special Olympics four and a half years ago and I have learned so many things. I go hiking and play basketball twice a week. Since I became a leader, I’ve also learned public speaking and how to give presentations. It’s been the best thing ever.”
We opted for the Saturday walk of the two-day festival. This was a 16km hike around the Circuit of Glendassen which goes up the Camaderry Mountain in Wicklow. A group of people from our Kilkenny and Dublin offices met in Laragh bright and early last Saturday morning and set off with the other walkers and our Special Olympics guides.
It was a wonderful, and at times challenging, hike. We experienced a multitude of seasons throughout the day, the low point being getting battered by hailstones at the peak.
However, we also had welcome bursts of hot sunshine which helped to dry us off between showers. The scenery along the route was spectacular and encompassed sparkling lakes, lush green forests and hills that were carpeted with heather.
All in all, it was a great event and one we’d definitely like to do again. Thanks to the Special Olympics for organising it. We’ve raised €870 to date so thanks to everyone who sponsored us!