The Energizer

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Resilient Parents Transform Grief into Goodness and Pain into Possibility

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer - Monday, December 10, 2018
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It was the bright yellow van with bumblebees on it that captured my attention as I walked from the conference center back to my hotel in Dublin. The women lining up to go into the van must have recognized my picture from the conference brochure and invited me into their experience—an experience that left me crying in sorrow as well as amazement.

BUMBLEance is the world’s first children’s interactive ambulance service, designed to serve families across Ireland. Brilliant in concept and birthed from the heartbreak of Tony and Mary Heffernan, BUMBLEance is part of the Saoirse Foundation, a non-profit named after their daughter, Saoirse who was diagnosed in 2009 with Batten’s disease, a rare genetic and fatal brain disorder. The following year, her younger brother Liam, was also diagnosed.

With two critically ill children, the Heffernans spent plenty of time on the road going to hospital appointments and surgeries. The couple knew first-hand the challenges and stress parents face when moving seriously ill children. When Saoirse died in January 2011 at age five, the Heffernans realized the need for a specialized child-focused service dedicated to transporting critically ill and seriously injured children. BUMBLEance launched in 2013 and became the Children’s National Ambulance Service for Ireland.

Read the rest of the article on LinkedIn.


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Eileen McDargh Keynote Speaker Blog Author

About Eileen!

Since beginning her consulting and training practice in 1980, Eileen has become noted for her ability to speak the truth with clarity, wisdom, humor and compassion. Long-standing clients and repeat engagements attest to her commitment to make a difference in minds, hearts and spirits of organizations and individuals. She draws upon practical business know-how, life's experiences and years of consulting to major national and international organizations that have ranged from global pharmaceuticals to the US Armed Forces, from health care associations to religious institutions. Executive Excellence magazine selected her as one of the top 100 thought leaders in leadership and among the top ten consultant providers of leadership development.

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