CHEQUE: Killarney Craft Ladies presented a cheque to the Kerry Hospice Foundation recently. Pictured front l-r were: Kate O’Connor, Pat Doolin, Margaret McCarthy, Angela Curran and Honor Doyle. Back l-r were: Peg Coffey, Betty Benson, Dermot O’Reilly, Cathal Walsh, Ailish O’Sullivan and Colette Sorensen.


The creative and crafty skills of one local kind-hearted group – who rescue and spruce up old teddy bears – is helping to raise funds for charity.

Killarney Craft Ladies (KCL) last year raised €3,441.34 which they presented to the Kerry Hospice Foundation recently.

And to date the ladies have raised €17,975.11 for the local charity.

Set up in January 2013, the sole purpose of the group was to fundraise for the Kerry Hospice Foundation/Palliative Care.

“Our aim was to ‘rescue’ teddy bears from charity shops in the locality, in particular Killarney, Tralee and Castleisland,” Margaret McCarthy, spokesperson for the group, said.

They then extended their search to Cork, Limerick and as far away as Galway. They also welcome teddy bears from the public.

Members of the group include, Betty Benson, Peg Coffey, Honor Doyle, Margaret McCarthy, Kate O’Connor, Brid O’Donoghue, Eilish O’Sullivan and Colette Sorensen.

They meet twice a month to knit, sew and spruce up the bears, and make them stylish new outfits. The bears are then ready for resale at the Halloween and Christmas Craft Fairs at the Killarney Outlet Centre. The ladies also had a very successful sale at Manor West, Tralee, last December.

“The Killarney Branch of Kerry Hospice Foundation wishes to acknowledge the generosity of KCL in selecting them as beneficiaries of the proceeds of their fundraising activities,” Pat Doolan, Chairperson, Killarney Branch said.

“They combine, what is for them a hobby, with fundraising for their selected charity.”