THE latest recipients of Limerick Garda Youth Awards have been told to live their lives to the full and to dream big.
Seven individuals and three different groups from across Limerick city and county were honoured at the 2019 awards which took place at the Woodlands House Hotel in Adare.
It’s is hoped that some of the recipients will be nominated to contest the national Garda Youth Awards which will take place next April.
Sponsored by the Garvey Group, the awards aim to honour young people – aged between 13 and 21 - who have made a significant contribution to their local community.
More than 40 awards have been presented since they were established in 2014.
Speaking at the awards ceremony Minister of State, Patrick O’Donovan commended the achievements of the awards recipients.
“They have a wide range of interests and have really, I suppose, in their own way they have added to their community and to their school and to their families and more importantly to themselves,” he said.
“This is an interaction between An Garda Siochana and young people in County Limerick and Limerick city in a way which you mightn’t expect to see. I think it’s a great example of how community policing should be done where a relationship is built up at a very young age between children and local community gardai,” he added.
Echoing the comments of Mr O’Donovan, Jim Garvey of the Garvey Group said he’s delighted to be able to support the awards.
“It’s about positivity, it’s about young people having a positive influence on their communities and it’s about empowering communities and it’s fantastic,” he said.
“There is a saying in Kerry that dreams are for the youth and memories are for the old so I will just say go out and fullfil your dreams – live them, live life to the full and you will enjoy them in later years,” he added.
Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche told those present that each and every one of the award recipients deserve great credit for everything they have done in the their young lives.
“It always amazes me how great the talent is. Young people are great, adults give out about them all the time but there is a real get up and do attitude with young people in Limerick and it’s fantastic to see them being honoured,” he said.
Sarah Corbett-Lynch – the teenage daughter of Limerick man Jason Corbett who was murdered in America more than four years ago was one of those who received an award.
The 13-year-old and her brother Jack returned to Limerick to live with their aunt Tracey following the death of her dad in North Carolina in September 2015.
Since returning to Ireland, she has completed voluntary work for several organisations as well as getting involved in Team Limerick Clean Up in her local community.
Sarah, who is a first-year student at Mungret Community College, has raised funds for the Midwest Cancer Foundation and the Asthma Society and, last year, she campaigned to save a local amenity from demolition.
“I feel very special because through this and through my book I will be able to get to other children who have been hurt and who have been through a lot of grief and I hope it helps them,” she said.
Cllr Kevin Sheahan also attended the awards ceremony and members of the Corpus Christi NS school also performed.
The 2019 recipients of Limerick Garda Youth Awards are: Danielle Hogan, Moyross; Nathan Ambrose, Prospect; Laurel Hill Colaiste TY students; Charlie Sulliman, Castletroy; Finn Coleman, Caherline; Cadet Unit, St John’s Ambulance; Caoimhe Lalor, Ard Scoil Mhuire, Corbally; Evan Condon, Newcastle West; Day Group, Limerick Youth Service; Sarah Corbett-Lynch, Raheen.