Cork branch of Irish Soccer Referee’s Association kicks-off Semi Nude Calendar 2012 To support the Jack & Jill Foundation
John Gaffney from Farranree in Cork wanted to organize something “a bit different” to acknowledge all the help and support given to him and his family by the Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation in respect of his late daughter Grace. John, who has already done charity runs and quiz nights for Jack & Jill, convinced his fellow referees from the Cork branch of the Referee’s Association of Ireland to pose for a Semi Nude Calendar 2012 which was shot at Turners Cross by Evening Echo photographer Brian Lougheed free of charge. Over 2,000 calendars will go on sale for €10 each in plenty of time for the Christmas market with proceeds going to the Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation. To date, Jack & Jill has supported 1,400 children nationwide with home nursing care and respite, including 155 children in Cork.
When John’s daughter Grace was born in June 2002 she was diagnosed with a chromosomal disorder called Patau’s syndrome, which according to the medics was not compatible to life. The Gaffney family knew they had a very little time with Grace and wanted to bring her home for whatever time they had, so that Grace could be part of the family, including her four siblings. The Jack & Jill Foundation supported the Gaffney family with her 24 hour care regime and Grace stayed at home for six precious weeks before she passed away aged 10 weeks.
According to John, “Those were 10 tough weeks for us. Coping with a child like Grace at home is hard and the support we got from Jack & Jill meant everything to us. Over the years, we’ve always been keen to support Jack & Jill through the usual marathons table quizzes etc. This year we wanted to do something a bit different – something that would make people laugh and at the same time raise much needed funds for this fantastic charity. So far, we’ve had great support from everyone and we’ve plenty of volunteers for the photocall and companies willing to advertise in the calendar.”