Children’s Charity to walk Camino for new centre

An Irish children’s charity is issuing an urgent appeal for volunteers to walk the Camino in Spain, to raise funds for a new Dublin centre. The Guardian Project, which already has a centre in Arklow, Co Wicklow, helps children cope with divorce and bereavement.

“We need to raise a minimum of €30,000 to support existing services and to open a new centre in South Dublin,” says charity founder and co-ordinator, Deirdre Burke, a family lawyer working in Dublin and Wicklow. “We are looking for 30 volunteers to walk 100km to Santiago de Compostela in North West Spain, and we think it will be an amazing journey.”

Deirdre is doing the walk herself and asking each volunteer to raise a minimum of €1,900 each “but the Guardian Project will help with lots of ideas and support!” The full cost of the trip for each volunteer is included in this fundraising amount, she says. “Millions of pilgrims have taken this journey along the Camino over the years and this time, it’s for a hugely important cause.”

“In today’s society the family structure is very different, and often splintered, and I believe that the supports we provide are absolutely essential in the lives of this generation of children.”

“When children come to the Guardian Project, they realise that they are not alone, and that their family is not the only one affected by separation. They are given tools to help them cope with their individual situations; helped to understand their feelings and to work out their anger, fears and anxieties; they are given a safe space to speak and be heard. In a family crisis, the adult whom a child normally turns to may be unable to offer the usual support, and that is where the Project can step in.”

The centre provides counselling, therapy, play therapy and additional support services to children who are experiencing Parental Separation and Bereavement. “We also offer a year round dedicated Centre for Rainbows Ireland, with our Peer Support Programme for children,” says Deirdre.

In addition, the project runs Family Law Mediation and an Access Facility, which offers relationship building between separated parents and children, on a supervised basis as required.

For further details and to support this appeal you can call 0402-91477, email enquiries@guardianproject.ie or go to www.guardianproject.ie

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