9 July 2019
By Elaine Murphy
Cork ARC Cancer Support House, which offers a range of support services to people with cancer and their families, have launched a major new fundraising campaign aimed at facilitating the organisation’s move to a new city premises.
The campaign, generously supported by Casey’s Furniture and in partnership with Cork City Council, asks the people and business community of Cork to ‘Make Room for Cork ARC’ in supporting the estimated €1.6m cost of renovating and fitting out Sarsfield House, a substantial, detached two-storey building in the suburb of Wilton. The new premises will offer much-needed space, privacy and potential for Cork ARC to deliver new and innovative services – which will result in Sarsfield House becoming a benchmark centre of excellence for the provision of non-clinical cancer support in Ireland.
The campaign was unveiled at Cork City Hall by Lord Mayor Dr. John Sheehan. At the heart of the launch, and the #Room4ARC campaign, is the motif of a purple couch, symbolising the essence of what Cork ARC offers – a quiet room and a comfortable, safe space where people with cancer and their families will find the help and support they need.
Money raised from #Room4ARC will help Cork ARC make the move from Cliffdale – the original Cork ARC Cancer Support House established in 2003 – and transfer operations to Sarsfield House.
Commenting on the campaign, Professor Seamus O’Reilly, Consultant Medical Oncologist said: “Since 2003, Cork ARC has been there to help people at the most vulnerable time of their lives, delivering free, non-clinical services that have been proven to have a positive effect on clinical outcomes, and providing a range of essential supports not only to cancer sufferers but also to their families.
“In 2019, those services are needed more than ever – since the first ARC house was developed, cancer has increased in Ireland by 7% per year. We’ve now outgrown the physical infrastructure of our current building. Sarsfield House will provide a more 21st-century appropriate infrastructure so we can better deliver the services that we know will have an impact on the lives of people with cancer – that is our mission.
“To deliver our mission, we need your support – that is why I am calling on the people of Cork to Make Room for Cork ARC, and I have every confidence that this call will be answered.”
Peter Casey of Casey’s Furniture commented: “We are delighted to offer our support to this campaign to support Cork ARC and the invaluable support they offer to the people of Cork. It’s a particular honour to have a Casey’s couch at the centre of it all.”
Also speaking at the launch, Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr John Sheehan said “As a practicing GP, I am acutely aware of the invaluable services provided by Cork ARC and I am delighted that Cork City Council is partnering with this fundraising campaign. I would like to call on the HSE to proceed with the sale of Cork ARC’s current home at Cliffdale without delay and allow the proceeds to be used to help fund the much needed development at Sarsfield House on behalf of all of the people of Cork”.
As part of Cork City Council’s partnership with the campaign, a large advertising banner featuring the Purple Couch will be erected on the Grand Parade over the coming weeks.
To support the campaign a fundraising website has been set up at www.room4arc.ie.