It’s time to ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’ once again as annual charity walk in aid of the Mercy Hospital Foundation returns on Sunday, July 17th

The annual ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’ charity walk is back this July, and organisers are hoping to have the biggest and best fundraiser to date. Like so many events over the last two years, the popular event was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Taking place on Sunday, July 17th, organisers of the charity walk anticipate that hundreds of people will once again take on the 22km challenge of walking from The Viaduct Inn to the Town Hall in Bandon to raise funds for the Mercy Cancer CARE Centre. 

This will be the 9th year of the ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’ walk, back in all its glory, having taken a virtual format last year in line with Covid guidelines. Set up in 2013 to remember Bandon man Mark Prendergast, who passed away from testicular cancer in 2012, the charity walk has raised over €367,000 for the Mercy Cancer Appeal, and in particular the Mercy Cancer CARE Centre. 

Commenting on the return of ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’, Mark’s brother, Damien Prendergast, Chairman of the organising committee said:

We are delighted to see the return of this popular walk as we are so proud of what ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’ has achieved over the past eight years, especially the efforts made last year when the walk took a very different format with people participating virtually. Little did we know when we first started organising the event in honour of my brother Mark, that we would go on to raise over €367,000 to date.

Funds raised this year will once again go towards the Mercy Cancer CARE Centre which will provide vital support for patients and their loved ones as they go through their cancer journey. The Mercy Cancer CARE Centre will provide a range of services, from one-to-one counselling and patient support groups, to a safe haven for patients at the time of their initial diagnosis. It will also provide a psycho-oncology service to support the mental health and emotional needs of cancer patients and their families during such a difficult time. 

Carol Crean, a founding member of the organising committee said:

We are committed to securing funding to support current, former, and future cancer patients and their families at the Mercy Hospital. Your support is so important, now more than ever, as cancer patients continue to be affected by the after effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Thanks to you we can help them through this difficult and worrying time.

With over €1.6 million raised so far, the Foundation needs to raise approximately €800,000 more to make the long held goal a reality for cancer patients at the Mercy; and it is anticipated that ground will be broken at the development this July.

Speaking on the impact the funds have had, CEO of The Mercy University Hospital Foundation, Paschal McCarthy said:

The funds raised have made a significant difference in continuously improving cancer services at the Mercy University Hospital. The past two years have been difficult for all of us but particularly for cancer patients, many of whom found themselves isolated as they were at a higher risk of contracting Covid-19.

Receiving a cancer diagnosis can, and often does, cause huge emotional distress which is why we are committed to developing the Mercy’s dedicated Cancer CARE Centre just a minute’s walk away from both the main hospital and the Outpatient Department. The premises at 9 Dyke Parade will be transformed into a non-clinical facility to provide a quiet and safe haven for patients and their families to access an increasingly necessary range of services to support those affected by a cancer diagnosis.

If you would like to ‘Make Your Mark on Cancer’ on July 17th, registration is €25, or free to all who take Sponsorship cards. Visit or phone 086 4542132 to register or receive your sponsorship card. Registration will also take place at Bandon Town Hall in the weeks leading up to the Walk,  dates and times TBC; as well as on the morning of the walk at The Viaduct.

For more information on fundraising for the Mercy Hospital Foundation and information about the Mercy Cancer CARE Centre visit

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