University College Dublin’s (UCD) Agricultural Science Society (AgSoc) has announced its two new charity partners for the 2021/22 academic year, as well as plans for the resumption of in-person events as the students return to the Belfield campus.

This year, UCD AgSoc will be raising funds for Hooves 4 Hospice and Irish Community Air Ambulance, two charities that are intertwined with the farming community across the country.

Hooves 4 Hospice

Hooves 4 Hospice is a fundraising project founded through a collaboration of Lions Clubs, the farming community, supportive organisations and individuals from across counties Offaly, Laois, Westmeath and Longford.

The effort is to raise funds to build a much-needed Midland Regional Hospice, covering the four counties, which are the only counties in the country that do not have a level-three hospice.

A lot of the fundraising efforts of the charity centre around farmers rearing and donating animals to be sold in aid of the charity on special sale days in marts across the counties.

Irish Community Air Ambulance

Irish Community Air Ambulance provides Ireland’s first dedicated and charity-funded helicopter emergency service.

Operating from its base in Cork, the air ambulance provides a vital lifesaving service covering a large part of the country, offering fast access to advanced clinical interventions at the roadside by highly trained pre-hospital emergency care medical personnel.

In its first full year of service, the air service responded to 490 calls, including 46 farming accidents and over 80 cardiac arrests.

In-person events make welcome return

The society has also begun planning for the return of in-person events, with the easing of restrictions allowing for everything from wellie walks on the streets of Dublin, sports and social events, to industry and career discussions to fill the calendar for between now and the Christmas break.

The return to campus has also allowed the reopening of the famous tea shop in the ag building in Belfield, which is run by the students and is supported by the Irish Farmers Journal.

UCD AgSoc, which is one of the biggest and best-supported student societies in the country, organises events to raise funds for charities each year, with huge sums being raised annually prior to last year, when the society still managed to raise €15,000 for Strangeboat Organ Donation and Embrace Farm through online events and raffles.

The society’s events and news can be followed through their social media.

Meet the committee

  • Auditor: Shauna Jager.
  • Careers: Neil Maher.
  • Treasurer: Dathal Kent.
  • Secretary: Claire Dolan.
  • Teashop: Therese Donaghy, Hannah Woods, Shauna Murphy and Mark O'Dowd.
  • Ag ball: Orla O'Driscoll, Simon Lanigan, Sam Murphy and Laura Thompson.
  • Sponsorship: Stephen Claxton.
  • Sports reps: Ciarán Finegan and Michéal Cahill.
  • PR/social media: Aoife Quinn and Paddy Clear.
  • Ceres mag: Karen Walsh and Sarah Donnelly.
  • Debating: Róisín Scully.
  • Diversity Officer: Mary Smiddy.
  • 3rd year reps: Ciara Buyers, Eilish Gill and Sinéad O'Sullivan.
  • 2nd year reps: Amy Kenny and Michael Dever.
  • 1st year reps: Emily Cassells, Maeve Cooper and Sean Gill.