The Muff Branch of the Red Cross was first formed in 1939 when the Irish Red Cross was set up in Ireland. Members of the local community got together at the start of WW2 due to the fact Muff was so close to the border with Northern Ireland and felt it would be important to help treat the wounded or injured. After the war the branch closed but some members continued as active volunteers of the Irish Red Cross.
The current Branch reformed in 1972 and celebrates its 40th birthday this year. Members of the branch trained in first aid and in 1975 the female and male novice teams represented Donegal in Galway at the National Competition in first aid with the male team taking the overall 1st prize. Since that year teams from the branch have been successful in representing the County and have brought back a number of cadet and novice titles.
Activities of the Branch in the 1970’s included first aid training, providing first aid cover at local and county events and first aid competitions. In 1975 the Branch started a concert in St Mary’s Hall as a fundraiser to buy uniforms and the then Chairman Mr JP Bradley was quoted in the Derry Journal “it is a credit to the members of the branch that the talent emerged almost entirely from within its own ranks”
Over the years Branch membership has continued to grow and today the branch has a wealth of youth members, aged 10-17, who learn first aid skills, take part in the Irish Red Cross OPTIONS programme, Positive Images Cultural diversity programme and form first aid teams who compete at local and national level.
The Muff Branch is very proud to have Donegal Head Quarters in Muff which the late Mr Gerard Moyne was instrumental in securing for the Irish Red Cross in Donegal. Members of the Muff Branch also play a key role in the running of the Donegal Area Committee; Mr Ray Mackey is Chairman, Mr Martin Mc Kinney is Area Director of Units, Mr Patrick Mc Gonagle is Assistant Area Director and the Branch are very proud to have a member on the National Youth Working Group, Bernie Rutherford as Chair of the Muff Branch.
Today the Branch continues to follow the principles upon which the Red Cross was formed and would like to thank past and present members for giving up their time to volunteer to train younger members, provide first aid cover at events and fundraise.
Chairperson, Bernie Rutherford would like to thank all members of the community who have supported, donated to and trained with the Irish Red Cross Muff Branch over the years. Your support allows us to maintain and improve equipment, facilities, and services so that we can continue to keep or community safe.
Photo: Chairperson of the Irish Red Cross Muff Branch represtents Irish Red Cross Youth at an event hosted by Her Excellency President Mary Mc Aleese in Aras an Uachtarain. Pictured here with Chairman of the YWG, Darren Ryan and YWG member Andrew Finn (2010)