sweet gesture | 

Big-hearted Dundalk teen spends all his pocket money on treats for the elderly

'He's hoping to put a smile on lots of people's faces this Christmas, especially many older people who may not have had much social activity for a long time'
Déaghlan McGovern

Déaghlan McGovern

Gerry Hand

A 14-year-old Dundalk boy is being "really sweet" by playing Santa to the elderly in his neighbourhood.

Déaghlan McGovern, who is undertaking a Personal Scouts Project for Christmas, used all his pocket money and launched a GoFundMe page so he could buy a galaxy of sweets and treats which he is set to deliver around residential care homes in his home town next week.

He has asked neighbours, family, friends, his drama group and anyone else he could think of to donate a Selection Box or other treat, so he can distribute them before Christmas.

His mum, Sheona, told Sunday World: "He did his first Solo Community Scout project for Easter 2019 where he collected nearly 500 Easter Eggs, chocolates and treats, and donated to 11 different charities and causes around town.

"He wanted to do more, but Covid struck, so he thought another project was badly needed this Christmas after everyone had almost two years of social isolation and restrictions.

"The GoFundMe page was set up this year to allow family and friends further away in Ireland, in the UK, the US and other countries to donate, or for local people who are isolating or restricting their social interactions.

"He's hoping to put a smile on lots of people's faces this Christmas, especially many older people who may not have had much social activity for a long time."

The youngster's appeal has received a huge response, leading to one room of the family home being turned into a chocolate store.

Sheona added: "People have been very generous to him, at present he has almost 350 selection boxes, many tins of sweets and boxes of biscuits, and raised almost €500 on his GoFundMe page.

"He's hoping to distribute all on the weekend of December 18 to all the residential care homes, respite centres, day centres, Women's Aid and homeless charities in Dundalk.

"We have the spare room jammed full of goodies and we have to keep it locked in case the dogs get at them!"


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