On Friday, March 24th, volunteers across Ireland gathered to fundraise for the annual Daffodil Day event in aid of the Irish Cancer Society.
The Irish Cancer Society was founded in 1963 by Professor Austin Darragh. Prof. Darragh was inspired into action after learning that 100 people were dying each year from skin cancer that would have been curable, had they known to seek treatment. As well as increasing awareness and supporting research, the society also work to provide support and advocacy services for cancer care in Ireland.
This year marked the 30th Daffodil Day. The daffodil is a symbol of hope and renewal. In a happy coincidence, it is also the national flower of Wales. Welsh fans visiting the capital on Friday, to support their team in the World Cup qualifier match against Ireland, were delighted to find their iconic bloom on display and available for purchase in aid of a worthy cause.
Dubliners will be familiar with Daffodil Day fixture, Daff Man. Daff Man was stationed at his usual daffodil selling spot on O’Connell Street, in spite of the ongoing Luas construction works.
Daff Man is known as James Gilleran when not wearing his daffodil suit and has been volunteering for almost 25 years. His dedication has been documented throughout the media, including a story by RTÉ news.
Outside the capital city, teams of volunteers ensure that Daffodil Day has a vibrant presence in every county of Ireland. In Monaghan for example, a team of roughly thirty people, comprising school children and volunteers, sell pins, flowers and arrangements throughout the town.
This year the Irish Cancer Society aim to raise over €3 million. Donations can still be made online.