Kick-starting the charity programme is the Balloo Eat and Defeat initiative, inviting customers at any of its three restaurants to add a donation of £1 onto their bill for NICHS and help defeat chest heart and stroke illnesses in NI.
Also on the CSR menu at Balloo is a bespoke fundraising dining experience in the Autumn/Winter. With planning for these initiatives firmly underway, the company is determined to make this year memorable for its team and NICHS.
All money raised by Balloo Inns Group will go towards NICHS’s support groups and programmes. This will enable the charity to provide emotional support and practical advice or signposting to people and their families and carers affected by chest, heart and stroke conditions.
Ronan Sweeney, Managing Director of Balloo Inns said, “We are privileged to have the opportunity to provide vital awareness and funding support to a great cause like Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke. I am particularly passionate about this cause, having suffered from a stroke myself almost ten years ago. For me, it was a huge shock and something that was very difficult, mentally to deal with. I remember on the night it happened, it felt like total blackness; standing in the middle of my bedroom totally confused. Whilst it initially impacted the way I was able to run my business, I recovered quickly and within one year I was able to a buy our second pub. It took a lot of mental strength but for me it was important to not let the stroke affect the future of my life or business.
“I want to use what has happened to me to help others. Looking back, my wife Jennie and I could both have benefited from the support Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke gives stroke survivors. With 13 people suffering a heart attack and 10 people suffering a stroke every day in Northern Ireland, it is really important that we play our part in reducing these numbers. Our team is excited to get involved in our wide range of fundraising activities and committing to a cause outside of our day-to-day business.”
Lorna Watson from Northern Ireland Chest, Heart and Stroke commented, “We are really excited about the partnership with the Balloo Inns Group and we are very thankful to Ronan for sharing his story.
“It’s important for us to team up with organisations in the food and drink sector so we can raise awareness of healthy eating which plays an important role in the prevention of serious health issues such as chest, heart and stroke conditions. We are looking forward to working closely with the Balloo Inns Group’s team over the next year, with exciting fundraising initiatives and events.”
The Balloo Inns Group employs around 120 staff across its three restaurants: The Parson’s Nose in Hillsborough, Balloo House in Killinchy and Poacher’s Pocket, Lisbane.
The award-winning restaurants receive critical acclaim with all three retaining their spot in the prestigious Michelin ‘Eating Out In Pubs’ Guide 2018.