A fundraising walk in support of Fr Martin Reilly’s efforts to build a hostel for trainee nurses in Africa will take place in Drumraney this Sunday, October 17.

Fundraiser this Sunday to support Drumraney priest’s work in Malawi

A fundraising walk is taking place at the Maryland GAA pitch this weekend in support of local man Fr Martin Reilly's efforts to build accommodation for student nurses in Malawi.

The walk is happening this Sunday, October 17, and will get underway at 12.30pm. Participants are asked to register on the day by making a donation of their choice, and refreshments will be served afterwards.

Fr Martin, from Walderstown, Drumraney, has been based in Malawi since February 2017. After visiting his native parish during the summer, he recently returned to work in a country regarded as one of the world's poorest.

Proceeds from Sunday's fundraiser will go directly to Fr Martin and will be put towards the construction of a 68-bed hostel for trainee nurses in Malawi. It will be called The Eileen Browne Hostel in memory of Fr Martin's aunt, a dedicated nurse and native of Rosemount who died in 2019.

Money which Eileen left to her nieces and nephews is being put towards the hostel but won't cover the full cost of the project, and therefore it's hoped events like this weekend's walk in Drumraney will help make up the shortfall.

"(Eileen) was generous to her nieces and nephews and I thought this would be a good way to remember her - that through her legacy she would be able to give a start to young girls who are training to be nurses in Malawi," Fr Martin told the Westmeath Independent last month.

The hostel he is working to develop is designed for students of St John's Institute for Health in Mzuzu, Malawi, which was set up in 1963 by the Medical Missionaries of Mary from Ireland.

For those who can't make the walk at the weekend, but would still like to donate, a Go Fund Me page is due to be created.

Local councillor Tom Farrell encouraged as many people as possible to come out and support this weekend's event, saying all of the proceeds would be going directly to a very worthy cause.