02 Oct 2022

Paulstown native set to cycle 750km from Paris to Nice to raise funds for Saplings school in Goresbridge


ome of the Sigmar team who are partaking in Paris2Nice Back Row (l-r): Julia Purcell, Mike McDonagh Front Row (l-r): Naomi Coleman, Adrian McGennis, Madeline Donovan

A Paulstown native has convinced ten of her colleagues from Ireland and France to cycle from Paris to Nice (750km over six consecutive days) this September to raise funds for a worthy local cause.

Julia Purcell, Marketing Manager with Sigmar Recruitment, will undertake the challenge to help raise funds for Saplings Special School in Goresbridge.

Saplings is a special school for children aged 5 to 18 with autism and complex needs in Goresbridge. All students have a primary diagnosis of autism and a secondary diagnosis of a mild, moderate, or severe/profound learning disability.

Their target is to raise €30,000 to help the school create sensory rooms and build specialized outdoor play areas for the students, that will help the students to grow, learn and develop.

“I’m delighted we’re able to undertake this project for Saplings, Goresbridge,” says Julia.

"Having met the kids and staff members of the school, I’m more determined than ever to help them hit the fundraising goals to complete the project. The staff and kids of Saplings are inspirational and deserve a facility that reflects this."

The team are not just cycling 750km to fundraise but once the target is achieved, they will help complete the manual labour involved in the project along with 40 colleagues.

This will be done in partnership with Difference Days ( who organise CSR initiatives. CEO, Dennis O’Reilly said: “This is a really worthwhile and much needed project. Everyone in the school is absolutely brilliant, but we can see that the facility can be transformed, so we’ll do that… in one day. We’ll involve the students, parents, teachers, and staff of Sigmar to roll their sleeves up and be a key part of the project.”

Sigmar CEO, Adie McGennis said: “We are thrilled and honoured to run this project. The team are training hard for the cycle, but that may be the easy bit! We are covering all our own expenses, but need to raise €30,000 to cover the costs of the project. Having seen some of the Difference Days team’s other projects and spoken to Julia about the school in Goresbridge, it will be an incredible but emotional project, that I’m thrilled we are supporting.”

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