DR Alan O'Donohoe and Dr Michael Gill of the Trinity Centre for Health Sciences in St James's Hospital, Dublin are studying the toxicity of ecstasy. They are seeking people who have taken the drug and have had a more severe reaction than anticipated and who may or may not have attended a doctor as a consequence. Individuals would be asked to give a description of the reaction and may be requested to give a small blood sample. Any help from the medical profession would also be welcomed. All contacts and information will be treated in the strictest confidence. Contact can be made through the hospital or telephone (01) 4537822 ext 242 or (01) 6082463.

THE Dublin Rape Crisis Centre needs volunteers to accompany rape victims to the Sexual Assault Treatment Unit in the Rotunda Hospital, Dublin. Comprehensive training will be given. Applicants must be aged over 28 years. Write for an application form to the Director, the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, 70 Lower Leeson Street, Dublin 2. Closing date for completed applications is February 21st.

THE Irish Heart Foundation fundraising overseas walks for 1997 will take place in Portugal (one week) and Argentina (two weeks) in September and October. Information is available from the Irish Heart Foundation, 4 Clyde Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. Tel (01) 6685001 or Cork office (021) 505822

CHERISH, an association for single-parent families, holds meetings every Monday morning covering a wide variety of topics. This morning Margaret Neylon discusses what people's signatures say about them. Next Monday, the meeting will focus on information on births registration, access, maintenance and guardianship.

There is a free creche available during meetings which are held in 2 Lower Pembroke Street, Dublin from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Alternatively, the Cherish drop in centre is open between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. (except lunch time), Monday to Friday, and pregnant women and unmarried women are welcome to call in for a cup of tea and a chat.

ASPIRE, the Asperger Syndrome Association of Ireland, first annual short story competition (already mentioned in this column) has extended the closing date for receipt of stories from January 31st to February 28th, 1997. Full rules of the competition may be obtained by sending a SAE to James Toner, ASPIRE, PO Box 40, Greystones, Co Wicklow.