Hollywood’s Brendan Gleeson supports coffee mornings for ‘life-affirming’ hospices

Actor Brendan Gleeson has urged coffee lovers to start brewing to raise €1.5million for “life-affirming” hospice services across Ireland.

The Hollywood star joined hospice hosts and volunteers at Bewley’s Café on Dublin’s Grafton Street on Thursday to launch the Bewley’s Big Coffee Morning Social for Hospice charity appeal.

Gleeson asked people across the country to organize a coffee morning on Thursday, September 22, and said the funds raised would help keep people living “full lives” for as long as possible.


From left: Fintan Fagan, CEO of St. Francis Hospice, Audrey Houlihan, Chair of Together For Hospice and CEO of Our Lady’s Hospice and Care Services, actors Brendan Gleeson and Col Campbell of Bewley’s pictured presenting Bewley’s Big Coffee Morning Social for Hospice (Conor McCabe Photography/PA)

The event, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary, has raised more than €41.5 million for local hospices and specialist palliative home care services since its inception.

Gleeson, whose late parents were cared for at St Francis’ Hospice in Dublin, told the PA news agency: ‘While your illness defined you as a patient, hospice care looks beyond your illness and sees you as a whole person – with desires, goals, Hobbys and Interests.”

The legendary actor, 67, whose latest film The Banshees Of Inisherin is due out in October, insisted patients “are being looked after in the best way possible to enable them to lead as full and independent lives as possible for as long as possible”.

“It takes great courage for patients and families to seek hospice services to ensure the needs of their loved ones are met at this important time in their lives. In my experience, hospice care is life-affirming and enriching,” he added.

“I would like to ask everyone to host a coffee morning on September 22nd, wherever they are in Ireland, to ensure this important work continues.”


Brendan Gleeson (Conor McCabe Photography/PA)

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Registration is now open to anyone wishing to host a coffee morning benefiting a local hospice.

Together For Hospice Chair Audrey Houlihan said she was “delighted” to see the event back for another year.

The organization represents 26 hospices and specialist palliative care providers across the country that support patients and their families.

Funds raised locally stay local and flow back into each local hospice service to fund medical and general staff, palliative care beds, home visits, specialty equipment and new hospice construction.

“The continued support of this campaign over the past 30 years is a testament to the generosity of our Coffee Morning hosts, donors, ambassadors and our long-time sponsor, Bewley’s,” said Ms. Houlihan.

“The funds raised each year from the Irish public ensure we continue to provide vital support to individual patients and their families every day.”

Jason Doyle, Bewley’s Ireland & UK Managing Director, described the 30-year partnership with Together For Hospice as “very special”.

“After a difficult few years fundraising, we hope people across Ireland will dig deep and make this a landmark year for Bewley’s Big Coffee Morning Social for Hospice,” he said. Hollywood’s Brendan Gleeson supports coffee mornings for ‘life-affirming’ hospices

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