Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) recently hosted its sixth annual event to raise awareness of childhood cancer and to raise funds for Childhood Cancer Foundation. Light It Up Gold is marked at WIT because back in 2013 three mothers working in WIT all met on St John’s Ward in Our Lady's Children's Hospital with their children.
The Golden Moments Afternoon Tea event took place on Monday, 30th September in the Tourism & Leisure building on the WIT Cork Road Campus. Hosted by the Department of Languages, Tourism and Hospitality, with special thanks to Nuala Gordon, Ray Cullen and the BA in Hospitality Year 1 students who all worked very hard to make the event a huge success.
Local families who have been affected by childhood cancer were in attendance as well as staff and students. The idea behind ‘Golden Moments Afternoon Tea’ is for everybody to take a moment out of their busy schedules and consider how they can support each other. Special messages were placed on the beautiful Tree of Hope and remembrance for children with cancer and those children who have sadly died from childhood cancer.
The Golden Moments Afternoon Tea line up included:
- Serena Meagher who spoke emotionally about her son Ben who is a survivor of childhood cancer
- Psychology student Daniel Docherty sang ‘Bring Him Home’ with such emotion. Daniel took part in the Autism’s Got Talent show in London in August 2019 with ‘Bring him home’, a song that resonates with so many parents with children in hospital
- The choir, Phil Brennan, his wife Elaine Brennan, Sarah Bates and Sarah Jane Lavery all sang so beautifully at the event again this year
- Breda Whittle, Nurse Manager from the Paediatric Ward in UHW spoke about the paediatric oncology rooms in UHW and the improvements she has seen since the involvement of Childhood Cancer Foundation and their charity partner, Cartamundi. Nurse Isobel Flynn was also in attendance. Nurse Isobel works closely with the local CCF representatives overseeing all the works that are being done to improve the rooms for the children
- Students Brendan Ahearn and Catherine Chance read poems: ‘Imagine’ and ‘To honour you’.
- Face painters Lauren and Donna from the WCFE looked after the kids
- Games and sweets for the kids
- Staff and students formed a Human Gold ribbon to show their support for Childhood Cancer and to raise awareness
- A big raffle with so many wonderful prizes donated by local businesses, staff and local organisations
- Catherine Connolly, Chair of the Oireachtas committee on Irish language, and Senator Brian ó Domhnail spoke to the Forristal Family about the Light It Up Gold Campaign and Childhood Cancer Foundation
As part of the Light It Up Gold campaign the Tourism & Leisure Building was lit up at night in gold as well as the WIT homepage and other websites. Gaelscoil na nDeise also lit up in gold as did many other landmarks across the country and around the world.