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Children raise a whopping €300,000 for Irish Autism Action
The money was raised through Early Childhood Ireland National Pyjama Day
The children, or should we say pirates, from The Cottage Kids Playschool in Tyrellstown, Lusk presented a €300,000 cheque to Irish Autism Action today on behalf of the 100,000 children in early childhood care and education settings nationwide who took part in the Early Childhood Ireland National Pyjama Day in March 2015.
The money raised is being used by Irish Autism Action to develop “Access Autism” an awareness and training programme, specifically tailored for early childhood educators and open to parents also launched today. From January 2016, IAA will facilitate 27 free “Access Autism” workshops nationwide.
At the cheque presentation today, the Minister for Children James Reilly paid tribute to the generous efforts of all the children, staff and parents involved in this annual fundraiser, with the emphasis on children helping children and having fun.
Early Childhood Ireland took the opportunity at today’s cheque presentation to highlight the lack of Government investment to support children with additional needs in the early childhood care and education sector and welcomed Minister Reilly's recent commitment that his department will take the lead on this issue and address the lack of supports by this Autumn.
According to Teresa Heeney CEO of Early Childhood Ireland, “The lack of investment in children with additional needs at preschool level just doesn’t make sense and it flies in the face of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. This injustice and this shameful lack of investment for children with additional needs in their earliest years must be addressed as a matter of urgency.
“Meanwhile, the €300,000 donated by parents across the country whose children put on their PJs for fun and for this fundraiser is just the tip of the iceberg. It is a good start, but must be built upon and we are urging Minister Reilly and his cabinet colleagues to make the necessary investment for these our youngest and some of our most vulnerable citizens.”
Today’s cheque presentation brings the total raised by Early Childhood Ireland National Pyjama Day, now in its twelfth year, to €2.3 million for Irish children's charities including Irish Autism Action.
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