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Friends, both old and new, gathered together in the Four Seasons Hotel, Dublin, last Friday, May 9th to remember a very special little boy at Sam’s Lunch and raise much needed funds for the Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation!

Baby SamNow in it’s 7th year, 200 guests attended this special lunch which is so kindly organised by Sam’s parents, mum Jo and dad John Nolan and sister Amy. Baby Sam was guest of honour at the first lunch but sadly passed away from an extremely rare brain condition some five weeks later, aged just 13 months. His brave parents continue to host the lunch every year to support Jack & Jill.
This year a serious note was brought to the table……when, Jack & Jill’s specialist children’s nurses from all over the country took the opportunity to urge Minister for Health to redesign the broken system of discretionary medical cards. In addition, the atmosphere in the banquet room was very charged after extremely emotional speeches from Sam’s mum Jo and Jonathan Irwin, CEO of the Jack & Jill Foundation. After Sam sadly passed away, Sam’s Dad John Nolan, has kept Sam’s medical safely in his wallet all these years. Mum Jo held up the card and said:

“It’s Sam’s Gold Medical Card. It arrived in the post one day having been organised by Jack & Jill and Temple Street. Little did we know how precious this card was as Sam’s medication was so expensive. Our son needed 32 syringes a day, feeding tubes and the meds that kept him alive. My point is that this little card is essential and should be given to every child that requires 24 hour care. How dare anyone take this card from a child……everyone has a right to live. Some unknown person behind a desk makes a decision to take away the card. How can things have changed so much in 6 years?”

On a lighter note, the afternoon continued with a mouth watering lunch, fantastic raffle with a prize per table, and also an auction with some fabulous items up for grabs including stays in Ashford and Ballyportry Castles, Chanel pieces, and a painting by Terry Bradley to name but a few.
Our sincere thanks to John, Jo and Amy for all their hard work in ensuring the lunch is such a resounding success year on year. Special thanks to everyone for their wonderful support, from those who joined us to those who donated some of the many fabulous raffle or auction prizes. Special thanks also to Eddie Hobbs, patron of Jack & Jill, and Henry Anderson, Bacchus Vinos who brought a lot of fun and banter to the challenging task of hosting the raffle and auction……