Cavan girl named Ireland’s Inspirational Hero

There's excitement as Ballyjamesduff teenager Ruby O'Kelly has been named an Inspirational Hero in a national competition.

She's celebrating after being named in the Gala Retail and Virgin Media Inspiration Awards.

Set up to shine a light on individuals who make Ireland a better place with their selfless acts and inspirational deeds, Judges said 16-year-old Ruby stood out for her desire to help others and her positive influence as a role model for teenagers across Ireland.

She raised over €5,000 for the National Children’s Cancer Charity, after singing at a number of online charity events during the pandemic.

Ruby has written and composed her own song, highlighting bullying and is using her social media channels as a way for others to reach out and talk to one another.

Commenting on the quality of the entries, Gary Desmond, CEO of Gala Retail said:

“Now in their third year, the Inspiration Awards pay homage to people from all across Ireland who play their part creating a better country for us all. Operating in communities throughout Ireland, Gala Retailers have seen first-hand some of the great work that people have been doing and we are proud to have been able to recognise some of these inspirational individuals. We were overwhelmed by the level of nominations we received and Ruby along with the fellow inspirational heroes are true examples of people who are making Ireland a better place for us all.”

2021 marks the third year of the awards.

Marian Mattimoe from Mayo was named as Overall Inspirational Person at this year's event.

Gala Retail gifted €26,000 of prizes to the winners with the 26 county winners being awarded with €1,000 hotel getaways across Ireland.