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The Dip at Dawn took place in the early hours of the longest day, June 21, on Lahinch Beach.

Dip at Dawn to mark Summer Solstice on Lahinch Beach

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THE SUMMER Solstice was celebrated on  Lahinch Beach this morning (June 21) with a Dip at Dawn in support of The National Council of the Blind of Ireland (NCBI).
Senator Martin Conway joined the dozens who took part in the event which aims to remind the entire sight loss community that there is light even on their darkest days.
Senator Conway, who sat on the administrative panel and is now the Seanad Spokesperson on Health, is an advocate for Disability and Equality, has just 16 per cent sight and is the first visually impaired Oireachtas member.
Senator Conway said he understands the difficulties faced by those with severe sight loss and blindness. “Almost every week, I am contacted by somebody who has recently been impacted by sight loss,” he said. “Often, the contact is made by a family member, a son, a daughter or a parent of a young child. Very often, they are traumatised, deeply upset, with very little hope. I spend a lot of time reassuring people and connecting them to available supports such as NCBI. I did this dip at dawn in solidarity with the many people I have engaged with who are coming to terms with their new reality.”
Every year, 6,500 people are impacted by sight loss in Ireland but NCBI believes that there is a bright future ahead, with the right support. NCBI is the national sight loss organisation who works for all people living with sight loss. It provides practical and emotional support, rehabilitation services, and other training designed to help people with sight loss live independently and confidently.
NCBI’s CEO Chris White expressed his gratitude for Martin Conway’s efforts, saying: “His support in so many areas of NCBI is invaluable. We were thrilled when he told us that he was doing Dip at Dawn to raise awareness of the support that NCBI can offer people no matter where they are on their sight loss journey. A huge thank you to all who turned out, and we can’t wait to roll out this campaign nationwide next year.”
Details of  all of NCBI’s activities, as well as fundraising, are available on The organisation has more than 130 around the country, where more information is can be accessed.

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