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Rio Hogarty's story of her life in fostering, A Heart So Big, combines the heart-warming stalgia of Mollie Moran's Aprons and Silver Spoons with heart-breaking stories of children whose lives were blighted by being unloved and uncared for in the style of Cathy Glass. Nearly seventy years ago, Rio started to do her bit for vulnerable children, one child at a time. While she was still in school, she thought thing of bringing home a schoolmate who needed refuge. It was the start of opening her home and her heart to children in need. She has never stopped. A Heart So Big is the astonishing and moving story of Rio's life and how she has tried to make a difference. She has fostered over 140 children and in 2010, in an award created especially for her, she was named Mother of the Year at the annual People of the Year Awards. It includes stories of trauma - Rio has rescued children from the direst of circumstances and seen the price they pay for the failures of adults. And Rio has had her share of heartache along the way. But it is also a story full of humour, searing honesty and good old-fashioned fighting spirit. Rio Hogarty's A Heart So Big is an uplifting account of an amazing and inspiring life. 'She is instinctively protective of children in need, and doesn't take for an answer. She's also fearless.' The Herald
Rio Hogarty was born in Dublin in the mid-1930s. Apart from the dozens of foster children she has cared for in nearly 60 years of fostering - official and unofficial - she has two grown up children of her own.