Templepatrick businessman donates £20k to children’s Lapland charity

A County Antrim businessman has donated £20,000 to fund a festive initiative for those living with life limiting and life-threatening conditions.

Tuesday, 22nd December 2020, 10:59 am
Updated Tuesday, 22nd December 2020, 11:18 am

Britt Megahey, Founder and Managing Director of Barclay Communications, was moved when he read recent local press articles about the Northern Ireland Children to Lapland and Days to Remember Trust’s decision to cancel its annual flight to see Santa in Rovaniemi, the official hometown of Santa Claus on the Arctic Circle in Lapland, Finland, because of Covid-19.

The charity, which has taken over 1200 ill and vulnerable NI children to Lapland over the past 12 years, vowed to ‘keep the magic alive’ this Christmas despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Instead, it decided to swap air miles for groundwork replacing its traditional annual flight to Lapland to visit the Big Man himself, with a new, temporary initiative called “Three Steps To Christmas’”.

Colin Barkley, Chair, Northern Ireland Children to Lapland and Days to Remember Trust (NICLT) and Britt Megahey, Founder and Managing Director of Belfast headquartered Barclay Communications. Photo by Matt Mackey / Press Eye

The campaign called on local health trusts to nominate 100 very special terminally ill, life-limited or deserving children from all over Northern Ireland to receive some extra special Christmas presents from the charity while their siblings can join in the festivities as they too receive a smaller gift.

Each child will receive gifts to the value of £200, chosen by his or her parents, as well as a detailed and touching personal letter from Santa. This will be followed up by a video greeting from the man himself, from his home in Lapland, with his trusty elves, huskies and reindeer by his side.

The chosen gifts will be delivered right to each child’s doorstep, just before Christmas and, if Covid regulations allow, some of Santa’s elves will be there to help with the deliveries.

Learning of the project, Britt Megahey was so moved he decided to fund the entire initiative to support the charity’s tireless work.

Britt said: “We have always admired the work that the Northern Ireland Children to Lapland and Days to Remember Trust does and to hear they couldn’t fulfil their annual commitment of taking more than 100 vulnerable children to Lapland and how their hard efforts to raise funds had been met with many challenges, we wanted to do what we could to help.

Northern Ireland Children to Lapland and Days to Remember Trust’s (NICLT) Chair Colin Barkley, said: “This generous donation from Britt Megahey will fund those 100 gifts that will go to some of Northern Ireland’s most special children. It will allow us to bring the magic of Christmas to these children without the pressure of wondering how we will fund our next endeavour.

To find out more about the charity or to donate click on https://www.niclt.org/ or follow on Facebook @childrentolaplandtrust