Belfast Telegraph

Postman Dan to make short work of winter rounds for a good cause

By Michelle Smyth

A frost-free postie is getting his legs out this winter to raise funds for a children's cancer charity.

Lurgan man Dan McAlinden will go about his postal rounds in his shorts from now until February to raise funds for charity CLIC Sargent, which offers support to families here who are affected by cancer.

The hardy 47-year-old said his inspiration for completing the chilly feat was his friend's 10-year-old son who is battling cancer.

Most would recoil in horror at the thought of such a challenge, especially with our freezing winter weather, but ice-cool Dan is not fazed.

"Not at all," he said when asked if he was dreading ploughing bare-legged through the snow.

"At the end of the day a few months of discomfort to raise money to help these children who are going through a much greater hardship is a worthwhile venture."

He added: "I was initially going to split the money between the charity and my colleague's son, but the wee boy came to me and said he wanted it all to go to the charity."

Dan, who will carry a sponsor form in his van on his rounds, said he completed a similar challenge a few years ago to raise money on behalf of his own son Connor, who suffers from myasthenia gravis – a disease that causes the muscles to become weak.

"You get people tittering and giving you odd looks, but once they find out what you are doing they say 'fair play'.

"I think anything novel like this that raises awareness and funds to help those affected by childhood cancer is worth it," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

Money raised by Dan will go towards the charity's Home From Home appeal to provide families with somewhere to stay when their child is going through treatment at Belfast's Royal Victoria or City Hospitals.

With two children diagnosed here every week, more parents will be faced with the financial burden and added stress of travelling long distances to access treatment for their children.

The Homes From Home will go some way to alleviate this added pressure.

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