Multiple Sclerosis Ireland is pleased to announce that the MS Readathon will take place this year, beginning on November 1st and lasting the full month of November. This year MS Ireland will be launching an updated interactive website www.msreadathon.ie and thousands of readers young and old will take part in raising awareness and vital funds to support the 9,000 people living with MS, the most common debilitating neurological condition affecting young adults in Ireland.
The MS Readathon is Ireland’s biggest sponsored reading initiative when young readers raise funds for vital services to help people living with Multiple Sclerosis in local communities. The campaign is MS Ireland’s oldest and most anticipated event each year, originally launched by Roald Dahl in 1988 and has grown ever since. Traditionally, the campaign has been popular amongst the schoolchildren of Ireland, but this year MS Ireland is encouraging ‘grown up’ readers to take part and get their offices, clubs and families to rediscover their love of reading.
Lorna Cahill, Clontarf, who is living with MS is an ambassador for the campaign where her two young children will be taking part.
“I nearly fell off my chair when I was told I had MS. The diagnosis was very difficult for me to take, I was the fittest I had ever been, had just gotten married and was about to embark on the next chapter of my life. It felt like my life was over before it had even begun”
Having loved taking part in the MS Readathon during her own school days, she’s delighted now that her children in turn get to take part. “Harry and Sophia know that I have MS and that sometimes I get tired because of it. They are such wonderful children who have helped me so much.”
They both love to read and sometimes Lorna reads with them. This year she will take on the MS Readathon challenge alongside her children. “Taking part in the MS Readathon is something I want to do for Harry and Sophia. Covid-19 has had a huge impact on our children's education. It has also hit charities like MS Ireland hard.”
Ava Battles, Chief Executive of MS Ireland said,
“We were delighted with the response to last year’s virtual Readathon and we are all excited that the Readathon is back for its 34th year. For many children, the MS Readathon is the first time that they connect with books and literature and develop a lifelong love of reading. The MS Readathon is so important to MS Ireland and the MS community, it is our biggest fundraising campaign, and we simply cannot keep our services running without it. We look forward to children, parents, teachers, and readers of all ages getting stuck into thousands of books throughout the month of November and supporting the 9,000 people in Ireland living with MS and their families. Their efforts have been greatly appreciated and as each annual MS Readathon comes around, we want to acknowledge this.”