The Connacht squad and management will kick off the new 2014/15 season with a visit to Sligo RFC on Sunday week (June 29).
The visit by Pat Lam’s men will include an interactive training session with local children as part of a fundraising Family Fun Day in aid of the Donal Parsons Trust.
Donal Parsons is a six-year-old boy from Strandhill, County Sligo who, last year, was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma, a very rare children’s cancer.
Donal is currently receiving 18 months of intensive treatment at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin. He loves, dancing, talking, cooking and playing with his dog Nelly and is also a big Connacht Rugby fan.
The Donal Parsons Trust has been set up to raise money to access any viable treatments to prevent relapse and to pay for treatments if Donal does relapse. The Trust may also assist Donal and his family during his treatment
The Family Fun Day starts at 1pm and following the interactive pitch session, the Connacht players will be available for autographs and pictures.
The club visit is part of Connacht Rugby’s commitment to bring the professional squad to all parts of the province.
Last season the senior Connacht players and Pat Lam and the coaches visited Tuam RFC in Galway, Westport RFC and Castlebar RFC in Mayo and Carrick-on-Shannon RFC in Leitrim. With Sligo RFC being the most northerly club in Connacht, it is the ideal choice.
Speaking from Galway, Pat Lam said: “On the back of the success of last season’s club visits around the province, it’s great to be able to launch our new season in Sligo. This is a fantastic opportunity for us to support not only our rugby community in Sligo but also our young Connacht supporter Donal Parsons.
“We’ll have our first squad meeting of the season at the Sportsground on Sunday morning before setting off by bus to Sligo.
“It will be great to have the majority of the squad back together again and I know the management and players always look forward to these unique days where they get to meet our young supporters.
“It’s always a great reminder to us and others that we’re not a Galway team – we’re a Connacht team representing everyone in Sligo, Mayo, Leitrim, Roscommon and Galway.
“So if you’re around the area on Sunday, June 29, we’re looking forward to seeing you at Sligo RFC. Let’s all come out for a great day and to help raise funds for a very special cause.”
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