The Radio Kerry/ Kerry’s Eye Local Hero Awards have returned giving you the chance to celebrate the people who’ve given their all for their communities.
The awards, which proved to be highly successful last year, honour those who truly make a difference in other people’s lives.
February’s winner will be announced on Radio Kerry and Kerry’s Eye on Thursday, February 27th.
The judging panel will be led by Chief Superintendent Pat Sullivan.
You’ll be able to nominate your local hero by writing to Radio Kerry, Tralee.
There’s an entry form in today’s Kerry’s Eye newspaper and you’ll also be able to nominate on the Kerry’s Eye and Radio Kerry’s websites (click the ‘Nominate tab’ at the top of this page).
Closing date for February’s nominations is February 19th.
Last years ‘Local Hero’ award winners were:
The first winner in February was Carmel Godfrey from Kilgarvan a woman who’s created a sense of family and unity in her parish.
The panel of judges which includes Chief Superintendent Pat Sullivan chose Carmel for her tireless work with Kilgarvan Youth Club and other groups.
She has also helped the local Alzheimer’s Centre, raised money for a defibrillator and has come up with imaginative ways of promoting parish unity.
The Local Hero March recipient was sixteen-year-old Donal Walsh from Blennerville who has raised €50,000 for Our Lady’s Hospital in Crumlin. Donal who himself is living with cancer has written this appeal:
Donal who has cancer has written this appeal:
“A few months left, he said. There it was I was given a timeline on the rest if my life. No choice, no say, no matter. It was given to me as easy as dinner. I couldn’t believe it, that all I had was 16 years here and soon I began to pay attention to every detail that was going on in this town. I realised that I was fighting for my life for the third time in four years and this time I have no hope. Yet still I hear of young people committing suicide and I’m sorry but it makes me feel nothing but anger.
I feel angry that these people choose to take their lives, to ruin their families and to leave behind a mess that no one can clean up. Yet I am here with no choice, trying as best I can to prepare my family and friends for what’s about to come and leave as little a mess as possible. I know that most of these people could be going through financial despair and have other problems in life, but I am at the depths of despair and believe me there is a long way to go before you get to where I am. For these people no matter how bad life gets there are no reasons bad enough to make them do this, if they slept on it or looked for help they could find a solution and that they need to think of the consequences of what they are about to do.
So please as a 16 year old who has no say in his death sentence, who has no choice in the pain he is about to cause and who would take any chance at even a few more months on this planet appreciate what you have, know that there are always other options and help is always there.”
YOU CAN CONTACT THE SAMARITANS 24 HOURS A DAY AT 1850 60 90 90.
The Local Hero for April was named as Ben Brosnan, a woman who is the heart and soul of the community of Mountcollins Mother of four Ben was nominated by her daughter Martina for her work in the parish and fund-raising for charities.
Ben lost her two sons to suicide within a year and has raised funds for suicide prevention groups and organisations that help people with depression. She’s created a sense of unity in the parish by organising events such as sports days and an annual candlelit ceremony in the graveyard.
Ben says losing her sons was devastating but says the support she got from the Mountcollins community and her family kept her going. She is also very grateful to the charity Ó Lá go Lá.
The Radio Kerry/Kerry’s Eye Local Hero for May is a man who’s gone above and beyond to help his local community.
Sonny Egan of Crotta GAA club has been chosen for his 30 years of dedication to the communities of Kilflynn, Lixnaw and Abbeydorne
Chief Superintendent Pat Sullivan who is chairman of the judging panel says Sonny’s dedication to the GAA, in particular with regard to young people, cannot be overstated.
Annette Nolan nominated Sonny.
She explains there’s nothing he wouldn’t do for Crotta GAA club!
Chief Superintendent Sullivan says our communities are poorer without people like Sonny.
In accepting the award, Sonny says he believes the GAA is the lifeblood of parishes.
He says emigration has affected communities and local clubs.
The Local Hero Award winner for the month of June is Fabien Lugandu.
Fabien Lugandu from Tralee was nominated for rescuing Tralee woman Liz O’Brien and her 10-year-old son Derek.
The pregnant mother and her son had been walking by the River Lee in the town last January when Derek fell in.
Liz plunged into the river to save her son but she also got into difficulty.
Fabien was walking by when he heard their shouts for help.
He jumped in and rescued them.
Fabien is originally from Tanzania and has lived in Kerry for 13 years.
He recalls what he did on that icy day last January:
Who is your Local Hero?
We all know someone who quietly goes about their business and who’s acts of kindness on either an individual or community level go largely unrewarded. Now Radio Kerry and Kerry’s Eye are giving you the opportunity to recognise these individuals by nominating them for a Local Hero Award.
Simply fill in the entry form below to make your nomination: