Kilkenny man Eamon Cleere was named Ireland’s Charity Hero on Thursday night.
He received the accolade in a ceremony in Dublin at the Better Together Awards following a national competition.
Described as a “man in a million”, Eamon was one of 39 people nominated for Ireland’s Charity Hero Award, an accolade that celebrates unsung heroes who have made an extraordinary contribution to good causes in a voluntary capacity.
Eamon has spent the past 25 years fundraising for Enable Ireland at Kilkenny’s O’Neill Centre, during which time he has raised €1.5 million for the charity. He first became involved with the centre, which provides day, therapy and family support services for children with disabilities, when his son Eamon Jr. required its services 25 years ago.
“My wife Margaret and I thought we’d never see our son walk when he was born, but all that changed when we discovered Enable Ireland Kilkenny,” he said. “The centre has done brilliant work over the years for boys and girls in the region. I decided that it was payback time so I devoted myself to fundraising for facilities at the centre.”
Ireland’s Charity Hero Award is part of the Better Together campaign developed by The Wheel, the national representative body for community and voluntary groups, to build support for hundreds of charities and community and voluntary groups across the country.