Cobh Woman Collects Soft Toys To Help Naval Crew Calm Children Rescued in Mediterranean

By Seamus Whelehan

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Presentation to the crew of le Eithne from PDFORRA off toys and clothing for their operation Pontius mission

Senior Naval management at Haulbowline are preparing for two further humanitarian missions to the Mediterranean this year.
The LE Eithne is set to leave Port shortly on its second mission to the area, with the LE William Butler Yeats expected to depart in July.
It’s understood Naval command are ready to deploy a third vessel under ‘Operation Pontus’ if they are called on again by the Italian Marine Rescue Centre in helping those fleeing their homes in North Africa.
When the LE Eithne departs its Cork Harbour base in the coming days it will carry a very special cargo, over 1,000 cuddly toys.
The soft toys were collected through a social media campaign coordinated by crewman John Buckley.
A further 2,000 teddy bears, colouring books and crayons were collected locally by Cobh woman Rose Brien Harrington.
The toys will be used by Irish Naval crew to calm agitated children they rescue from the sea.
The LE Eithne was the first Irish vessel to deploy under Operation Pontus in 2015, since then Irish Naval crew have rescued over 15,000 migrants.

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