By Staff Reporter

A major charity event which was due to be held in the Lansdowne Hotel will still go ahead thanks to the generosity of the Dockers Club. Helping Hands Romania, which carrys out work for orphanages in remote areas of the Eastern European country, had already secured the services of Jim The King Brown and May McFettridge for its dance cabaret night scheduled for Friday June 1  before the sudden closure of  the once thriving Antrim Road hotel this week.

However the show will go on after  Brian McCann of the Dockers Club stepped in and generously made the Dockers Club available.

Over 200 tickets have already been sold for the event which raises money to send a group of between eight and 12 men to Romania every year.

The group, which was founded by Strathmore Park man Danny Walsh, includes a docker, a joiner, a couple of handymen and a plumber who give up a week of their holidays every year to carry out crucial construction projects in isolated parts of the impoverished country.

Each volunteer pays for his flight and accommodation and in addition raises funds throughout the year, a minimum of £1,500 each to fund the work they do.

A plumber by trade, Danny explained how he first got the inspiration for the charity.

“I heard an interview with a Romanian asking for help for a little girl who had a hole in the heart and was given less than six months to live,” he said.

“He was asking for help to bring the orphaned girl to the UK for an operation which was not available in Romania. I decided there and there and then to get involved.”

Although the group concentrate on construction they also interact with the under privileged children. Danny said some of the children touch their hearts.

“Laura has mental problems and at nine years of age will soon be too old to remain in the orphanage,” he said. “As she is a vulnerable person we are looking at ways of having her housed. If we have to build a home for her we will.”

The Antrim Road man, who is originally from the Glengormley area, is a member of Newington Football Club, who he said have been major supporters of the charity over the years.

Anyone who would like to go to the function in the Dockers Club or to donate to the charity can contact Danny on 07793811631.

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