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'Temple Street has become a home away from home for us'

The hospital launches its Trick or Treat fundraising campaign today.

Grace Cogan with Dublin manager Jim Gavin last week.
Grace Cogan with Dublin manager Jim Gavin last week.

TEMPLE STREET CHILDREN’S Hospital will today launch its Trick or Treat fundraising drive and one parent is urging members of the public to do all they can to help.

Gráinne Cogan’s daughter Grace will be the voice of the Trick or Treat For Temple Street radio ads and the family knows the hospital inside-out at this stage.

Grace travels to Temple Street every Monday for treatment. She has a rare condition known as Morquio Syndrome, which has impacted on her growth and her spinal cord. Although she is 10 years old, Grace will never grow beyond the size of a toddler.

So, every Monday morning at 7.30am, the family leaves Monaghan for the hospital in Dublin’s north inner-city.

“It’s a home from home for us now,” Gráinne tells TheJournal.ie.

She’s had two life-saving surgeries in Temple Street already.

Gráinne says that the staff at the hospital have made life for her and Grace easier through tough times.

“It’s not easy, but you do it because you have to do it. But it’s not like going into a hospital, the staff – from the porters, nurses, kitchen staff, and doctors – make you feel like you’re not just a number. That makes it so much easier.

“When your child is sick, that brings huge stress to any family and it’s not easy – there can be very tough days – but the staff nearly know what you’re feeling. They know her inside-out and that makes things so much easier. They know me, too. They know when I need to have a cry or leave the room.”

With the campaign kicking off today, Grainne says Grace is enjoying the limelight.

“She’s delighted – just loving all of the attention. It meant another visit to the hospital yesterday, but I would do anything to give back a little – and it is just a little – for what they’ve given us.

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“And Grace was delighted to have a fun day in the hospital.”

With the work the hospital has done in mind, Gráinne urges the public to dig deep if they can.

“I can’t put into words what it means for us.

“I’d say to people: Nobody knows when we’ll need the services of the likes of Temple St. It doesn’t matter if it’s €2 or €20, it adds up. Whether it’s small or large, there are things needed.”

Read: Big smiles, fidget spinners and a thumbs up – the Lions visited Temple Street today

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