It’s the sort of end of year story to warm the hearts. At this difficult time, there is kindness everywhere. As far as Northern Ireland is concerned, right now there are few people kinder than Frances and Patrick Connolly. On New Year’s Day 2019, the scooped £115m in the EuroMillions draw. At the time of winning, they said they would have “a lot of fun” giving most of it away. Now, true to their word, in December we heard that the NI EuroMillions winners gave away £60m over two years. That’s more than half! Friends, family, and charities across Northern Ireland benefited from their generosity.
How the NI EuroMillions Winners Wanted to Help
It was then (and still is) the largest single prize in Northern Ireland. And they set to work immediately. Firstly, they wrote out a list of 50 members of their family and friends who they wanted to help financially. Once that was sorted they donated to various local charities. They didn’t stop there though. The NI EuroMillions winners from Moira in County Down set up not one, but two charitable foundations of their own. The first is called The Kathleen Graham Trust – named after Frances’ mother. The charity is a community trust designed to help local people. The second is the PFC Trust doing more or less the same thing in the town where they now live.
But that isn’t all. They stepped up again in 2020, purchasing gifts for COVID-19 patients in hospital over Christmas. Further, they invested in iPads for local vulnerable people to remain in contact with family during the pandemic. When they heard a local community group was to manufacture PPE, they bought top of the range sewing machines to help it happen. Finally, they delivered hot meals and shopping vouchers to frontline staff. For NI, the couple have become a godsend.