Do it for Dan fundraiser nears half million as first birthday celebrated in Covid-19 lockdown

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Do it for Dan fundraiser nears half million as first birthday celebrated in Covid-19 lockdown

Do it for Dan: Dan with parents Niall and Aisling Donoher from Laois.

The astounding support given to the parents of Laois baby Dan Donoher has seen €485,000 donated in three weeks for potentially life saving treatment.

The Do it For Dan campaign is in aid of the only child of Laois football greats Niall and Aisling (nee Quigley) whose little boy turned one year old on Saturday March 28.

He suffers from a rare disease called Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 1 as well as scoliosis.
It gives him a life expectancy of just two years, however the family hope that they can raise US$2.1 million for a new treatment in the US that could improve his quality of life and chance of survival.

A Gofundme account was set up by a committee formed by friends of the couple and it sparked a flood of nationwide support.

Aisling spoke to the Leinster Express on March 23 from their home where they were  already in near lockdown to keep Dan safe from Covid-19 and other infections.

“The support is amazing, we are so overwhelmed, people were even logging on on Mothers day to donate instead of getting their mother a present. Especially to our fundraising committee who have given endless hours and done everything for us, we can't thank them enough. If Dan gets this treatment it will be down to the help of everyone,” she said.

The Covid-19 threat is no huge change to their life to protect Dan.
“Panic and worry is our life all the time, particularly in the winter months, we basically isolate. We get out for a daily walk with Dan in his buggy and for Mothers day our parents came to the back door and looked in through the glass. Dan was raising his arms to go to them, he doesn't understand,” she said.

Dan celebrated his birthday with just his parents and his teddy bears, and no less than three birthday cakes.

"We all know Dan's birthday wish  Thank you for all your messages, videos and of course donations  Dan had a lovely party with his parents and his favourite teddy bears".

He got hundreds of well wishes online, including a birthday song from Irish singer Jack L.

"Happy 1st Birthday to Dan Donoher. Please read this link and donate what you can on his birthday.Its would be the best present possible.Everthing counts.He needs all our help.Thanks you one and all.please share
#doitfordan #dandonohercampaign #superdan #happybirthdaydan" the Mullingar singer wrote.

Online fundraisers are replacing other events that were cancelled due to Covid-19, including a Gala Ball in the Heritage Killenard.
There is a toilet roll keepy uppy challenge to try, while many supporters are pledging to run distances daily for donations.

Watch Dan and his daddy doing their keepy uppy below.

Sean Tynan shaved his head. 


See Do it For Dan on Facebook and on gofundme.com.

Meanwhile, Seamus Mulhare is to release a music video and single in aid of the fundraiser.