14 July 2021

HB Ice Cream is celebrating an incredible 20 year partnership with Down Syndrome Ireland (DSI) and has kicked off this year’s fundraising initiative to support their members and families.


To celebrate this amazing partnership which has seen over €3.7 million raised  making a life-changing difference to those with Down syndrome as well as their families, HB has this year created a bespoke Hazelbrook Farm Vanilla Pack that will see 10 cents donated directly to the worthy charity from each pack sold. 


Funds raised from this year’s HB initiative will support DSI’s Work Readiness Programme, a critical lifeline launched to support the many vulnerable people with Down syndrome at risk of being left behind as a result of the pandemic. 


When the Covid-19 pandemic struck, many people with Down syndrome sadly lost their place of employment or had their Work Skills courses put on hold.


Being able to secure an employment place and attain work skills are hard-fought opportunities for those with Down syndrome.  The importance of being able to work and train is vital to the morale, self esteem and future of the hundreds of people with Down syndrome whose hopes are to contribute and play an equal part in society. 


DSI’s Work Readiness Programme, will combine online training with direct community engagement to advance employment opportunities for its members. DSI will design and deliver a series of courses to equip participants with skills needed to enter or rejoin the workplace, by facilitating opportunities for practical work placements while providing the necessary theory and literacy skills related to each sector.


Mark Smith, who helped DSI and HB launch this summer of celebrations and fundraising stated “I have been so lucky and given the best start in my working life, alongside amazing people who are helping me develop my acting and writing career.  However, for other people with Down syndrome, especially since the pandemic it’s been really hard finding work experience and full time employment.  This project is going to help so many people like me and how cool - we get to enjoy some delicious ice cream while raising money for this very important programme.


Barry Sheridan, CEO of Down Syndrome Ireland said “We are so proud to celebrate the launch of this HB initiative which is a symbol of a wonderful 20 year partnership with Down Syndrome Ireland. The funds raised down through the 20 years have been vital in making a real and tangible positive impact on the lives of those with Down syndrome and their families. This year’s initiative which will be supported through the funds raised is no different - our Work Readiness Programme demonstrates how DSI supports those with Down syndrome through all stages of life. We’re incredibly grateful to HB and Unilever for its long-standing support and for marking our 20 year milestone with a celebratory pack.”


Gill Irvine from Unilever added: “We deeply value our close and successful partnership with Down Syndrome Ireland and it has been wonderful to see how this partnership has evolved over the last 20 years. We are delighted to commemorate this milestone with the launch of our special edition HB Hazelbrook Farm pack and hope consumers will join us in supporting the important work of DSI by picking up a pack to enjoy this summer."


As part of HB’s 20 year celebrations, which runs until September, HB’s special DSI Hazelbrook Farm Packs will be available in shops across Ireland. This promotion will run from June to September 2021 and will be available in Mace, Eurospar, Spar, Tesco, Dunnes, Supervalu, Centra and Costcutter. 


To donate directly or to find out more information, visit www.downsyndrome.ie