Hitchhiking For Hope Tour

During July I packed my bags and hitch-hiked around Ireland on a ‘Hitching For Hope’ listening tour where I recorded people’s voices, visions, hopes and dreams. I had countless conversations, took in 17 counties, did 28 radio interviews, and met people from all walks of life. These included islanders on Inishbofin, farmers in Connemara, pilgrims on Croagh Patrick, orange men in Derry, soldiers at the national day of commemoration, business people and students in Dublin, activists in Wicklow, community workers in Moyross, monks in Glenstal Abbey and historians on the Hill of Tara. The whirlwind trip ended on the Hill of Tara just before I had to return to Dublin for a Council of State meeting at the Áras that the President convened. I then travelled to Glenties, Co. Donegal where I did a presentation at the MacGill Summer School, followed by a return to Dublin and an interview on the Marian Finucane show on RTE Radio One. The trip was a complete leap of faith as I had no income coming in and no money to pay my July rent but support came flooding in via online donations and the goodwill and generosity of the nation lifted me to make it all possible. 

I’m currently doing talks and media interviews about the experience and planning a book. I am hoping to find a sponsor/s or patron to help support me for a few months while I write it. (Email ruairi@community.ie )

You can find out more about the tour via the below links, the blog, and the Facebook page.

A huge thanks to everyone who supported the project. I am really grateful for your help.

 Blog | Facebook Twitter | E-news LinkedIn | Donate | Photos | YouTubeAudio

Media coverage of hitching project

Radio – Interview on Marian Finucane show RTE Radio 1
Video – ‘Capitalism, community and hope’ – My MacGill Summer School speech
 
Video – TV3 Morning Show
TheJournal.ie – 10 things I learned from hitching around Ireland
Irish Independent 
TheJournal.ie – meet the man who is hitching around Ireland

Irish Times

Derry Journal
Radio – BBC Radio Foyle
Radio – Newstalk George Hook inerview (3 mins in)
Radio – RTE Radio – Mooney show
Radio – Today FM – KC show

 

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hitch

The idea for the trip came after I was asked to speak at the MacGill Summer School on the theme of citizens’ views of the republic.

While it was a great honour to be asked to speak at this event, my initial inclination was to decline because I didn’t feel qualified to talk without first connecting deeper into people’s dreams for Ireland.

This gave rise to idea of a listening tour born out of a heartfelt sense that there are great people, organisations and communities out there that aren’t being heard in the media or in politics.

A huge thanks to these hope helpers!

I have been honestly blown away by the donations I am receiving online, some of them anonymously. I am seriously humbled and grateful. I’m completely skint and trusting I will be provided for so this support is really really valuable. THANK YOU anonymous person x 4, Dan O’Neill, Margaret Dorgan, Mary Cunningham, Andrew Madden, Caroline Price, Stephen Cawley, Kieran Clifford, Seán Óg McKiernan, Ann Keenaghan, the Social Entrepreneurs Ireland staff, Mari Kennedy, Grace Gerry, Geraldine Keane, Larry O’Connell, Eoin Ward, Ruth & Simon & Oisín O Mahony/Brown, Sunny and Peter, Clare Kiernan, Darragh Doyle, Sandy McKiernan, Pollygenic, Joe Murray, Dieter Gerhardt, Marie Molloy,  Niamh Gunn, Andrew Gibbons, John Cantwell, Darragh Keenaghan, Orlagh O’Brien, Tipp Tatler, Frances Byrne, John Concannon, Tony Griffin, Jim McKiernan, Anna Coyle, Brenda Coulter, Ronan Lehane, Michael McArdle, Jane Forman, Nuala Kavanagh, Joanna Heffernan, Aine Coughlan, Tony Bates, Paddy Duffy, Lydia Kiernan and all the Dublin Occupy Love crew, Aidan Cronin, Norma Smurfit, Patrice Reilly, Ruairi McCaul, Enda Donnellan, Noirin Ni Riain,  Owen Keenan, Karen Furlong, Colman Farrell, and Simon Ward. (Updated July 29).

And to others who have been helping out along the way including those have given me lifts, stories, food and encouragement. Thanks also Alice Kennelly, Clare Herbert, Muireannn De Barra, David Patterson, Ross, Lydia Campbell Kiernan, Breffni Clarke, Caitriona Quirke, Mark Patterson, Paul and James in Aughrim, Caroline Crowley, Joe and the lads near Dunmore East, Kurt and housemates in Cork, Damien Mulley, Allen Meagher, Jennifer and crew at Limerick Learning Hub, Eoin Ward and Martin McBennet, Marty and Justin at Uisneach Hidden Ireland tours in Mullingar,  and others I”m forgetting to mention. You are all brilliant! And so too my wonderful fiancé for her love and support – Susan Quirke/Susie Q.

Places I visited
Galway City, Spiddal, Moycullen, Oughterard, Cleggan, Inishbofin, Clifden, Mam Cross, Leenane, Westport, Croagh Patrick, Newport, Achill Island, Rossport, Belmullet, Mullet peninsula, Ballina, Sligo, Bundoran, Donegal Town, Mountcharles, St. John’s Pt., Letterkenny, Derry, Leixslip, the Áras, Dublin, Aughrim Co. Wicklow, Gorey, Kilmuckridge, Wexford Town, Baldwinstown, Kilmore Quay, Hook Head, Ballyhack, Passage East, Dunmore East, Cork City, Mallow, Limerick, Glenstal Abbey, Moyross, Killaloe Co. Clare, Nenagh, Borrisokane, Athlone, Hill of Uisneach near Mullingar, finish at Hill of Tara. Return to Dublin to prep for July 29th Council of State meeting and then travel to Glenties, Co. Donegal for July 30th talk. Then speaking at Big House festival, Co. Kildare on August 5th.

Media coverage
Thanks to TV3 Morning Show who interviewed me, to the Irish Timesand TheJournal.ie who who did features, the Irish Independent who published my article, and to the Derry Journal, Sunday Times, Galway Independent, Cork Independent, Cork Evening Echo, the Tipp Tatler, the Impartial Reporter (Fermanagh), the Donegal Democrat, the Anglo Celt. Thanks also to WorldIrish.com, DonegalDaily.com and other websites who covered the trip.

Thanks also to the radio stations who I did 28 interviews with:

National:            RTE Radio One Mooney Show and Marian Finucane show, Newstalk Breakfast show and Right Hook show, Today FM (KC show)

Regional/Local: Galway Bay FM, iRadio,  Mid West Radio, Ocean FM x2 , Tipp FM x 2, Highland Radio x 2, BBC Radio Foyle x 3,  98FM late night talk, Shannonside Northern Sound x 2, Flirt FM, South East Radio, KFM radio Kildare, Clare FM, Spin1038 FM, Cork’s Red FM, LMFM,  Dublin City FM,

Get updates
Blog | Facebook Twitter | E-news LinkedIn | Donate | Photos | YouTube | Audio

Media coverage of hitching project

Radio – Interview on Marian Finucane show RTE Radio 1
Video – ‘Capitalism, community and hope’ – My MacGill Summer School speech
 
Video – TV3 Morning Show
Irish Independent 
TheJournal.ie

Irish Times

Derry Journal
Radio – BBC Radio Foyle
Radio – Newstalk George Hook inerview (3 mins in)
Radio – RTE Radio – Mooney show
Radio – Today FM – KC show

teddy

‘There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.’ - Nelson Mandela

 


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