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Irish Mirror
Irish Mirror
Imasha Costa

Michael Flatley visits Cork Penny Dinners and makes donation to charity

Riverdance's Michael Flatley popped into Cork Penny Dinners with his family for Christmas in lovely scenes this afternoon.

The Irish-American icon came in to make a donation to the charity, which will be feeding over 10,000 Cork families this festive season.

Michael called into the soup kitchen with his wife Niamh and son Michael St James before going straight down to visit the volunteers who were working hard to make sure everything was in order before Christmas Day.

Co-ordinator Caitriona Twomey said she was thrilled to welcome them and the donation.

Michael Flatley with Caitriona Twomey of Cork Penny Dinners (Joleen Cronin)

She told Cork Beo: "It was lovely to see Michael and his family. He's a very kindhearted person and he never wants to forget the people in need."

Christmas has always been a special time for Caitriona, ever since she was a child.

The tradition of feeding the needy is a very personal, family one, begun by her own father who would play Santa to hundreds of Cork's needy on Christmas Day.

Michael Flatley with volunteer Leslie O’Sullivan (Joleen Cronin)

And as a child, Caitriona Twomey would not see her father Tom until late each Christmas Day.

Tom's kids could never understand why their father would go missing early on the most special family day of the year.

Now running the city's much cherished Penny Dinners charity, Christmas remains a time of great want, but also great service for the people who come to the soup kitchen and the scores of volunteers who help them with everything from a hot meal or a bag of toiletries to advice on budgeting or accessing housing and classes in healthy eating on a budget, using the internet or preparing a CV.


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