Call to action for the 7th annual 10km ‘Run for Ollie’

Calling all athletes, runners, and walkers to participate in this year’s 7th annual charity ‘Run for Ollie’ 10km Run which takes place in Milltown, Co. Galway, on Saturday June 11 2016 in aid of Ollie Burke. This event is organised each year by Ollie’s friends to raise funds for his daily medical care, and it promises to be a competitive and fun event for all.

With over 600 people including professional runners, triathlon participants and walkers that took part in last year’s 10km run, Ollie’s friends are hoping to increase those numbers for this year’s event and are calling for competitors from across the country to sign-up and compete to support this worthy cause.

Ollie Burke, a 39-year-old former GAA player, fell from a ladder, while carrying out electrical work, in 2007. He suffered severe head injuries, which resulted in an acquired brain injury. Ollie spent sixteen months in hospital, which has left him severely incapacitated and has required 24-hour care ever since. Every single penny raised from the charity run goes directly on funding the much needed care and on-going rehabilitation for Ollie.

Speaking about the event Ollie’s friend Gerard Bowens said,

“The past six years have been so successful and there has been an unbelievable atmosphere with hundreds of competitors coming to Milltown for the run. Even though we’re just a group of friends and not professional event organisers, our previous five events have shown that we run a truly well organised and professional event.

Ollie lives at home with his mother and brother and Gerard went on to explain his story:

“Unfortunately there was no insurance in place to fund Ollie’s care so we need to raise money to look after him. He needs 24 hour supervision and has difficulty doing ordinary tasks. He recognises his family but can’t communicate how he feels. Ollie is blind in one eye and has limited use of his left hand. He can walk which is great but he’s unable to leave the house unaccompanied. He has also developed serious epilepsy and is prone to regular seizures. It simply goes without saying that we, and Ollie’s family, need all the help we can get”.

This year’s charity 10km run will take place on Saturday June 11 at 3.00pm. Runners and walkers of all ages and abilities are welcome to take part in the event. Entry cost is €25 per person. Participants can register for this year’s run at www.runireland.com Registration will also be open at the community centre, Milltown, Co. Galway on Friday 10 (6pm-9pm ) or Saturday 11 (11am- 2.30pm ). We are delighted to have Health West Pharmacy Ballindine Co. Mayo as our Main Sponsor this year, which are also providing free care packs for the first 100 people to register.

All participants will receive a technical running t-shirt and medal. Everyone who enters the run will be included in a draw for many spot prizes that have kindly been donated. Parking, registration, changing and showering facilities are available at Milltown Community Centre and the local GAA pitch. To view the route map go to www.friendsofollie.com For more information on Ollie’s story and/or to donate to his fund please go to www.friendsofollie.com Set up in 2009, Friends of Ollie is a registered charity that provides additional financial support for the maintenance, care, health and assistance of Ollie Burke. Donations are eligible for tax relief (Organisation ID: CHY12124 ) and can be made online.

For more information contact: Gerard Bowens 086-3884005 or email [email protected] or visit www.friendsofollie.com

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