Students from Coláiste Ióasef, Kilmallock, pictured at the YSI Speak Out event in Limerick, where they presented their project Wellbeing Warriors before the lockdown began. The students have picked u
A GROUP of students who wanted to make a difference to the lives of their fellow pupils and teachers are among the winners of the Young Social Innovators of the Year Ireland Awards 2020.
Students from Colaiste Iosaef in Kilmallock won the YSI Fun-raising Award for outstanding achievement in innovative fundraising for their project, Wellbeing Warriors, that aimed to promote positive wellbeing in their school.
A new extension to the school had left some old classrooms empty and they decided to seize the opportunity. The idea for their wellbeing room was born.
It is a space where people could go to relax, switch off, and take some time out from the busy school day. They wished to leave a lasting impression on their school, and help to improve life at Coláiste Iósaef for many years to come.
They arranged to meet the principal, Noel Kelly, to discuss their idea and request permission to go ahead. He loved the idea, explaining to them that wellbeing is now seen as a guiding principle in Irish education.
He allocated them a classroom, but explained that dry-lining and plastering would need to be re-done before it would be functional. Quotes came back from contractors for approximately €4,000 for the work to be completed.
The team came back together after this news. They knew the project would be a huge undertaking in terms of fundraising, teamwork, communication, and organisation. They decided that while it was a lot of money, they would not give up. They would fundraise to achieve their goal.
Meanwhile, a team from Coláiste Mhuire, Askeaton, were also highly commended in the Make Our World Safer Challenge, for their project, Tide 4 Life that aimed to support the work of search and rescue teams through the design and testing of a new life-saving device.
Announcing the Challenge Award winners, Young Social Innovators CEO, Rachel Collier, said: “Communities need their young people now more than ever as we come together in this time of crisis, and teenagers have shown that, when given the opportunity, they can create incredible solutions to the very serious challenges facing us”.