Fitting tribute to memory of Melissa

A small community in the Volta region of Ghana now have a working well in their village thanks to the fundraising efforts of the friends and family of Melissa O’Reilly.
Melissa, from Carlingford, was only 29 when she sadly passed away from cancer last year. Ciaran Phillips, a first cousin of Melissa, was determined to do something in her memory and earlier this year the Omeath man came up with an idea to build a well in the small village of Abuitia in the Volta region of Ghana in memory of his friend.
Ciaran was driving through Ghana delivering aid through the Crosscause charity earlier this year when he noticed that the villagers had to walk for miles to get water. He decided that he would try and drill a well to help make their lives easier and do it in honour of Melissa’s memory.
Months of fundraising back home in Omeath enabled Ciaran to buy all the equipment necessary to build the well and earlier this month he along with his son Ryan returned to Abuitia to drill the well. According to Ciaran he could not be more proud of his community and thanked everybody who helped his dream become a reality.
“Melissa was a first cousin of mine and she was such a bright friendly girl. Everybody loved her and she was such a fun-loving girl. When she died last year at such a young age it hit all her friends and family hard and I wanted to do something in her memory.
“I decided on building a well in a small village in Ghana where the locals had to travel miles to get water in temperatures as high as 42 degrees. We spent a few months fundraising and I have to say I am very proud to live in such a generous and thoughtful community.,” he explained.
“Everybody did their bid to get this project up and running and myself and my son Ryan travelled to Ghana earlier this month to drill the well and put a plaque in honour of Melissa at the site. We drilled roughly 100 metres into the ground and we have it running off a generator. All the money raised went towards the project and myself and Ryan self-funded our trip to Ghana.
“It would do anybody’s heart good to see the faces of the 350 or so villagers who were so grateful to have a working well in their village. It’s a monument to our friend Melissa who always went out of her way to help her friends and once again I want to send out a huge thanks to all who helped make this happen,” stated Ciaran.

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