Appeal to help with funeral costs for Cork toddler Santina Cawley reaches target in one day

Appeal to help with funeral costs for Cork toddler Santina Cawley reaches target in one day

A fundraising appeal to cover the funeral costs of a toddler who was killed in Cork raised more than €8,000 in just a few hours, with €3,000 of that being donated in the first hour.

A GoFundMe page was set up by Cork radio station RedFM after a friend of Santina Cawley's family phoned the Neil Prendeville Show appealing for help for the two-year-old's mother, Bridget (Bridgee) O’Donoghue.

Santina died in Bridgee's arms at CUH last Friday after the toddler was found in a critical condition at an apartment in Elderwood Apartment Complex, Boreenmann Road, Cork.

Family friend Mary said Bridgee and her family are in shock.

"The woman is in shock and so are her kids. It's a hard thing to deal with and to explain to your children. Everyone is rallying around to help out. The girl (Bridgee) is numb, in shock," she said.

The baby died in her arms as far as I know. It's very sad.

"She's left with four small children now and she doesn't have the money. I thought I could get someone to help with it for her sake. People are traumatised; people are in shock."

Mary said Santina was a happy child and her loved ones are struggling to come to terms with her death.

"She was a beautiful little girl, she was a lovely little child, very like her mother and her grandmother. A nice little happy child. Her mother and her grandmother are lovely people.

"It's very hard, the poor girl isn't able to deal with it. It's very hard on her."

Santina's remains are expected to be released back to her family tomorrow, after which arrangements and Santina's Mass of the Angels will be confirmed

Flowers outside Santina Cawleys Apartment
Flowers outside Santina Cawleys Apartment

Bridgee has started planning the toddler's funeral, but Mary said she doesn't have enough money to cover the costs

"She started the process [of funeral planning] already but it's a hard thing to do. I can't imagine her state of mind doing it," she told the Neil Prendeville Show.

"I was just ringing to see could anyone else out towards the cost of the funeral because she hasn't got any money. Just to help out in any way possible.

"It's a very hard thing to do do. You get a lump in your throat talking about it. Anyone with children, their hearts are going out to the family."

Cork’s RedFM has set up a GoFundMe page which can be found HERE. They hoped to raise €8,000 to go towards Santina's funeral expenses. They reached the target in eight hours.

Among those who made a donation and offered their sympathies was Paul Higgins, whose two-year-old son, Zac, was diagnosed with a brain injury after he was knocked down in a hit and run in March.

"Rest in peace after this terrible incident," Paul wrote on the GoFundMe page.

"We were lucky to get our little boy back and fighting after another incident. Sleep tight little girl."

Edit: GoFundMe total updated at 5pm.

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