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Soldier Gavin Sweeney raising funds for his trip to Kenya.
Soldier Gavin Sweeney raising funds for his trip to Kenya.
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Soldier heading to Kenya to helped kids forced into sex trafficking

A Cork soldier is going above and beyond the call of duty to help build shelter homes for young kids forced into the sex trafficking industry in Kenya.

Gavin Sweeney, from Bweeng, is in the process of running and cycling 895km solo around Ireland over the course of seven days to raise €3000 so he can travel to Mombassa and build rescue homes in local communities.

All money raised will go toward accommodation, flights, and materials for the site.

Gavin began his epic journey, which encompasses a full marathon and 20-mile cycle each day, at the Port of Cork last Saturday before heading through the county into Limerick and onto the Cliffs of Moher in Clare. From there he went through Galway and headed north to Ben Bulben in County Sligo before cutting across country and down to Newgrange in Co Meath.

The final leg of the journey took in part of County Dublin, Carlow, Kilkenny and Clonmel in Tipperary.

Gavin is expected to arrive back in the Port of Cork this evening.

Proud dad Jim Sweeney said Gavin is an experienced runner and is well-known in Cork race circles.

“When he puts his mind to things he is brilliant. I know he'll do it because he is terribly determined,” said Jim.

“He'll come down the Dublin Road and into Tivoli and finish at the Port of Cork this evening.

"I'm hoping to have a piper there for him as he crosses the bridge toward the Port of Cork to welcome him home. He deserves it because it's a fantastic achievement.

“He's a tradesman and he'll be giving a hand with the building project in Kenya. He has run the Cork City Marathon and has finished as high as ninth. All the kids and parents turned out for him last week in Bweeng for a one-mile run and they raised nearly €600," added Jim.

Gavin's fundraising page can be found at www.gofundme.com/895-in-7-days. He hopes to leave for Kenya in January.