Connacht Rugby & Croí, The Sportsground, Galway 5/9/2023 Annie Costelloe, Head of Patient & Community Engagement and Mark O’Donnell – Head of Foundation / Chief Operations Officer with Connacht players Darragh Murray, Orla Fenton and Tiernan O’Halloran Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie

Connacht Rugby is delighted to announce heart and stroke charity Croí as their Official Charity Partner for the 2023/24 season.

Through this exciting partnership, the two organisations will work together to encourage healthy and active lifestyles among men and women of all ages in the West of Ireland, as well as highlighting the numerous services available to people in Connacht and across the country.

Established in 1985, Croí is a registered Irish Heart and Stroke Charity.  Croí’s aim is to lead the fight against heart disease and stroke, with a particular focus on serving and supporting communities across the West of Ireland.  Croí is based in the Croí Heart & Stroke Centre, Galway, which was opened in 2012 and is a leading centre for heart disease and stroke prevention, research, education, patient support and rehabilitation.  Croí’s work is underpinned by three main pillars, namely: Croí in the Community, Specialist Health Programmes and Advocacy.

Today’s announcement comes during World Heart Month, with a number of events planned over the coming weeks. This week Croí is offering two free stethoscope check-ins in the province, starting in Castlebar on Tuesday and a second in Galway on Thursday. Croí’s activities for World Heart Month culminate in Heartfest, a free community event In Croí House, on Thursday 28th September, which Connacht Rugby will be supporting.

Preparations are also well underway for the annual Croí Night Run, which takes place in Salthill on Friday 13th October, with registration now open at

According to Mark O’Donnell, Croí’s Head of Foundation & Chief Operations Officer: 

 “We’re absolutely delighted to be the Official Charity Partner for Connacht Rugby for the upcoming season.  Croí and Connacht Rugby have a lot of shared purpose and values, and while elements of our work now have a national focus, our home is Connacht and the footprint of our many regional activities very much aligns with the province.  There’s been great commitment, energy and enthusiasm from both teams in forming the partnership and we are really looking forward to a great year ahead with many exciting initiatives planned.”

Philip Patterson, Head of Commercial & Marketing at Connacht Rugby says: 

 “Joining forces with Croí is the perfect charity collaboration for us. When they told us about their mission to encourage a healthy and active lifestyle for men and women of all ages in the West of Ireland, we knew of the value that Connacht Rugby as an organisation could add to their goals. We support thousands of rugby players in the five counties of Connacht and, similar to Croí, it’s our mission to promote an active lifestyle by getting as many people as active as possible through rugby. 

 We look forward to working with Croí in the year ahead to achieve both those goals. We’d also encourage everyone to get involved with the numerous activities Croí have planned in the weeks and months ahead, and to check both the Connacht Rugby and Croí websites for more information.”

For full details about the partnership and upcoming events, keep an eye on and


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