The RNLI wants the public to give it some welly around this Mayday and support Cork’s lifeboat stations.
From Friday 1 until Monday 4 May, collections and fundraising events will be taking place in Cork and nationwide. Events will have a welly theme, like the yellow wellies worn by the RNLI’s volunteer crew members.
The charity is encouraging people to show their support by buying and wearing a yellow welly pin badge which will be on sale on streets and in local businesses or by holding a welly themed fundraising event. There is also a text option, whereby people can text RNLIMAYDAY to 50300 to donate €4.
The yellow welly is an essential piece of RNLI crew kit and is a part of every crew member’s kit. Waterproof with steel-capped toes, the specially designed boots keep the volunteer crew’s feet warm and dry, while also protecting them in dangerous conditions on deck.
RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew have responded to the Mayday calls of those in distress around Ireland’s 2,500km of coastline for over 190 years. Lifeboat crew members are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Many have full-time jobs, but each carries a pager and, when it goes off, they rush to the lifeboat station and launch the lifeboat to rescue those in danger. Funds raised go to the training of the lifeboat, which is constantly ongoing and the upkeep, maintenance and provision of new kit and equipment.
Last year RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew in the eight Cork lifeboat stations at Youghal, Ballycotton, Crosshaven, Kinsale, Courtmacsherry, Union Hall, Baltimore and Castletownbere launched 162 times and brought 255 people to safety. Almost a third of those callouts were carried out in the hours of darkness.
Supporting Mayday, Union Hall RNLI Lifeboat operations manager John Kelleher said: ‘We are delighted to be involved with the RNLI’s Mayday campaign. We are the youngest lifeboat station in Ireland and we – like all our lifeboat colleagues –rely on the generosity of the public to help my lifeboat station and others to save lives at sea. From crew kit to training and fuel for our lifeboats, every cent raised this Mayday will help us to continue to rescue people every day.’
Yellow Welly pin badges will be on sale in the following areas: Cork City on 1st and 2nd May, Douglas Shopping Centre on Thursday 30th April and Saturday 2nd May, Wilton Shopping Centre and Mahon Point Shopping Centre on 1st and 2nd May. Union Hall RNLI will also be selling pin badges in Skibereen on Saturday 9th May.