On Tuesday morning, Laois Sports Partnership and Laois LGFA presented The Easy Riders from Rathdowney with a signed jersey for their upcoming charity auction in aid of Laois Offaly Families for Autism (LOFFA).
The Easy Riders have been raising funds for charities across Laois for 20 years. In this time, they have raised almost half a million euros, an outstanding achievement. This year, to mark the special occasion they have organised a charity auction in addition to their regular charity cycle.
Laois Sports Partnership were kindly gifted a signed jersey from Laois LGFA following their All-Ireland Intermediate Final win. The number 21 jersey which belonged to Claire Conlon who is also FAI Football Development Officer for Laois, was presented to Laois LSP as a gift to mark the 21st Birthday of Laois Sports Partnership. The jersey featured a personal touch from the LGFA as it was signed by the entire squad of the All-Ireland winning team. Together the staff of Laois Sports Partnership decided the jersey should be used to raise funds for a chosen charity that supports people with disabilities. Through The Easy Riders auction the jersey will be sold with proceeds going to Laois Offaly Families for Autism (LOFFA).
LOFFA was established in 2001. The main objective of LOFFA is to support families in the Laois and Offaly areas affected by ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) by way of subsidised therapy, advice, information and advocacy.
LOFFA is made up of an elected committee of 8 volunteer parents and a membership of 100 plus families. They have daily engagement with members through private and public Facebook pages. They support families through a generous subsidy scheme, to offset the cost of private therapy. This is achieved with the assistance of their dedicated Therapy Panel. These include occupational, play, speech and behavioural therapy. LOFFA also provide counselling services. As a non-profit registered charity. LOFFA receives no public funding. They rely totally on their own fundraising efforts and every cent raised goes directly back to their members.
The initial ideas of completing a relaxing cycle and in the process raising a few euro for a deserving cause was the start of what has now become a landmark event in the area in and around Rathdowney, Co Laois. The 2003 committee that oversaw the first cycle had no idea what they were starting and how much time and work each cycle would take to organise. Over €456,00 has been raised by the Easy Riders which have all been for Local Charities or Charities associated with people in the area.
A member of The Easy Riders Committee said “The ultimate aim of each year’s cycle is threefold, firstly to ensure that all the cyclists and back up crew reach their destination safety. Secondly that The Easy Riders cycle is a fun cycle and is done to promote friendship and finally that we raise as much funds as possible along the way.
A lot of laughs have been had on the road down through the years which we hope this continue for years to come.”
Laois Sports Partnership Chief Operating Officer, Caroline Myers said “We are delighted to partner with Laois LGFA, The Easy Riders and LOFFA in supporting people with disabilities through this charity auction”
The auction will take place in The Brewery, Rathdowney at 9pm on Saturday 8th of October 2022. If you would like to place a bid on any of the available prizes but can not attend, contact Mary through The Easy Riders Facebook page or by phone (087) 7706 481.