Our CEO, Jimmy Fearon, will carry 10kg of bandages across the Dingle Peninsula to raise vital funds - Debra Ireland

Our CEO, Jimmy Fearon, will carry 10kg of bandages across the Dingle Peninsula to raise vital funds

Following on from a challenge last year in which he hiked barefoot for 10,000 steps along the Dingle Peninsula, Jimmy Fearon, Debra’s CEO, will trek across 40km of Kerry’s Dingle Peninsula while carrying a fortnight’s worth of bandages needed by people with EB.

The walk forms part of his charity’s annual Kerry Challenge fundraiser and will take place over the course of the weekend from Friday May 17- Sunday May 19.

On the walk, Jimmy will be joined by an estimated 130 people from all across Ireland as he carries bandages weighing 10kg across 40 kilometres, all to raise both vital funds and awareness of the an excruciatingly painful skin disease known as EB.

“Any discomfort I may feel pales into insignificance compared to a lifetime of pain endured by a person with EB,” said Mr Fearon this week as he launched the challenge.

“The bandages I will carry, which are used to protect open wounds and prevent infection, are equivalent to the weight of a car tyre but represent only 14 days of bandages used by an individual living with severe EB,” he continued.

Debra relies heavily on the public’s support to aid research and fund projects that can alleviate the daily strain people with EB and their carers endure.

“Some parents currently do three-hour bandage changes three times a week – the pain is so intense that the children need to have morphine to get through it. We have to improve home care and support for every family in Ireland, as the bandage change is destroying the natural relationship between parent and child,” said Jimmy.

“This walk will raise funds to help Debra win this battle, through direct services and support, respite and research,” he said.

He hopes to raise €5,000 – and every donation helps Debra to supply antibacterial silk socks, therapeutic cot sheets and pillowcases, in addition to books and feeling cards to help children with the condition process their emotions.

It can also help deliver key emotional, psychological and financial support while investing in much needed EB research as the condition is currently incurable. The charity funds counselling sessions for adults with EB, play therapy for children, home visits, home adaptations and specialised EB training for nurses and medical staff.  

Public donations also help Debra fund scientists carrying out vital research into finding treatments and cures for the genetic disease. 

This year, a generous Debra donor has agreed to match all the funds raised during the Kerry Challenge, meaning if you donate €20, Debra will receive €40.

If you would like to donate, you can do so by searching for ‘Jimmy Fearon’s Fundraising Page’ on idonate.ie or by clicking here.