KVALITO is a Sponsor of the Westport Oskars, a Fundraiser for the GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association)

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06/17/2024

In April, Claire Murtagh, and I (Gemma O’Neill) attended “The Oskars” in Westport, Co. Mayo, with the hope of winning an Oskar for our film Calendar Girls.

KVALITO, a generous sponsor, supported our film for ‘The Oskars’, a Hollywood-inspired night of glitz and glamour in Westport, Co. Mayo. This unique event is a local Westport GAA club community fundraiser, where awards like Best Actor, Best Film, etc, are announced in a grand Hollywood style.

In the months leading up to the night, seven films were rehearsed, produced, and directed by a diverse group of individuals from our community. This collective effort showcased their talent and was aimed at raising much-needed funds for the upkeep and improvement of our clubhouse and pitches in Westport. The excitement was palpable, both during the preparation and filming of each movie and on the night itself when the awards were announced.

A little about ourselves:

Claire and I are based in Westport, on the West Coast of Ireland. It is a beautiful, bustling town right in the middle of nature, on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, overlooked by a holy mountain called Croagh Patrick. You can hike in the morning, swim in the afternoon, and enjoy a traditional music session at night.

Claire and I have worked as consultants with KVALITO for over six years. When we are not working for KVALITO, we are mums to six children: Claire has Noah, Evan, and Romy, and I have Ruairi, Cian, and Sarah.

The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) is Ireland’s largest sporting organisation. It is celebrated as one of the greatest amateur sporting associations in the world. The sport plays a huge role in Irish society. It actively connects Irish people all over the country and the world. Its main purpose is to “promote Gaelic games, culture and lifelong participation as a community-based, volunteer-led organisation which enriches lives and communities.”

Children start playing GAA football, camogie, and hurling at age 5. All six of our children play for their club, Westport GAA. Claire and I are the proud coaches of the Under 9 Westport girls’ Gaelic football team.

As previously stated, the GAA is an amateur sport, volunteer-led, so it needs to raise money through numerous fundraisers. Westport GAA has a strong tradition of fundraising and regularly devises innovative fundraising methods; this year, it was decided to raise funds to improve their existing facilities at St Patrick’s Park by hosting an Oskar night. Claire and I were cast in the 2003 British comedy film Calendar Girls. The night was a triumph for our club but also reflected the incredible spirit and involvement of our community. It was heartening to witness the enthusiasm, and continued support for a cause that extends beyond our clubhouse into our community.

The success of that night resonated far beyond the awards; it echoed through our town, emphasising the unity and collective strength that defines our town and community. We deeply appreciate KVALITO’s generous support for us and our movie. Our logo flashing on the big screen and in the evening’s brochure was a proud moment for us. Thank you again, Magdalena and team, for your invaluable support in allowing us to give back to our community. We are proud to work for an employer that holds the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the forefront.

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