Timo And Ian Encourage Participants To Enjoy The Cycle This Saturday

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Timo O’Sullivan and Ian O’Connell.

TIMO O’Sullivan and Ian O’Connell, both from Killarney, are getting into the spirit of this years Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle 2019 which takes place this weekend.

Their chosen charity – The National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH) Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin is one of the recipients of this year’s Charity Cycle.

6,000 cyclists will take to the Famed Ring of Kerry 175Km route, for the 36th Annual Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle on Saturday, July 6.

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Both men are encouraging cyclists to slow down and enjoy the fun and scenery along the way. The inaugural  ‘Triangle Dance’  part of the ‘craic’ at Coomakista pass – the infamous ‘breaking point’, is a new addition to the atmosphere on the day.

The National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH) provides  specialist rehabilitation services to patients from throughout Ireland who, as a result of an accident, illness or injury have acquired a physical or cognitive disability and require specialist rehabilitation.

It is 35 years since an accident at work, resulted in Timo O’Sullivan, sustained life changing injuries and leaving him wheelchair bound.

Timo is  an avid angler, volunteer with many organisations in Kerry, and a wonderful advocate for wheelchair accessibility.

Timo spent six months in the expert care of the NRH, recuperating from his injuries and being rehabilitated helped him cope with his new life.

Speaking about his time there,  he said; “The treatment and the expert care and lifelong friendship I received from staff at the NRH, has enabled me to  carry out every aspect of  daily life to the fullest  extent. 35 years on, and  I am involved in many volunteer organisations in Killarney, beekeeping is my new passion.”

Ian O’Connell, the inspirational Killarney teenager, who sustained serious injuries in a cycle accident two years ago, is currently undergoing rehabilitation at the National Rehabilitation Centre.

Ian’s mantra ‘if you can’t stand up…stand out’ griped the nation, he now has over 42,000 followers on instagram, through which he offers online support to young people and their families with similar issues in their lives.

Ian continues to defy the odds, continuing his school and gruelling rehab every day.

This year’s Charities to benefit from the cycle include:

• Aras Mhuire Nursing Home – Aras Mhuire endeavours to create a home environment and enhance the quality of life for their residents. Jimmy Deenihan will their ambassador this year
• Cúnamh Iveragh – Cúnamh Iveragh supports children and young adults with special intellectual needs. Kerry football legend, Maurice Fitzgerald, is a proud ambassador for Cúnamh Iveragh and the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle this year.
• Breakthrough Cancer Research – The primary aim of Breakthrough Cancer research is to implement funding and support for their phenomenal research into cancer treatments in Ireland. Former Olympian David Gillick is their ambassador this year for the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle
• Kerry Rape & Sexual Abuse Centre – KRSAC provides professional, free and confidential counselling, information and support to those in need. Well known Irish journalist, Billy Keane, is an active ambassador for the centre this year.
• Recovery Haven – Cancer Support House – Recovery Haven is a cancer support house which provides free cancer support services to the people of Kerry. Captain of the Irish Ladies Rugby Team and Recovery Haven Ambassador, Ciara Griffin, will be cycling the ring herself this year to raise vital funds for the cancer support house.
• St. Mary’s of Angels – SMOA is a home for people with physical and intellectual disabilities ranging from mild to moderate, and for many, it has been their home for most of their lives.

There are also an additional five charities who will be allocated funds from the registration proceeds;

Camphill Community Dingle
Brú Columbanus, Cork
Ard Curam (Day Care Centre)
Southwest Counselling Centre
National Rehabilitation Centre Dublin

The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle is a non-profit organisation of everyday people who come together every year to make a powerful difference to the lives of thousands of people in need across our local communities.

Over the past 36 years, The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle has raised over €15 million for 150 charity organisations through the annual support of participating cyclists and volunteers.

Outside essential costs to run the 175km Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle, all funds raised go directly to carefully selected charity organisations.

Funds raised to date have contributed towards new hospital extensions, special needs facilities, care for the elderly, suicide prevention, sea and mountain rescue, cancer, kidney and end of life support and much more.

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