Tuesday 25 June 2019

Top national award for Good Counsel

Good Counsel students with gardaí having been presented with their Garda Youth award
Good Counsel students with gardaí having been presented with their Garda Youth award

David Looby

Students and staff from Good Counsel College, New Ross, have won a national Garda Youth award for their tremendous work over the past two years fundraising for Gorodishche Orphanage in Belarus.

Last May a group of TY students from Good Counsel College travelled to Belarus to volunteer with children and young adults with physical and intellectual disabilities and another group of students from the school are leaving this month to work at the orphanage.

In May 2018 a group of ten Transition Year students and two of their teachers, Aoife Sutton and Kieran Barron travelled to Belarus to volunteer in Gorodishche Orphanage.

Prior to their departure the group did a lot of preparation and planning and a huge amount of fundraising work within their communities.

The New Ross students were thrilled to win an award at the Garda Youth Awards ceremony in Portlaoise.

A group spokesperson said: 'The boys spent a fantastic week with the children. It was challenging and life changing and undoubtedly an incredible experience for all. The project was such a big success that the school are sending another group of students this May who have been equally hard-working and determined. Overall, the students and staff have raised almost €25,000 in the past two years.'

New Ross sergeant Eddie Wilde praised the youths on their fantastic work in Belarus with the orphans there.

The Garda Youth Awards celebrate outstanding young people between 13 and 21 years of age and recognises the good work being done by young people throughout communities.

The awards acknowledge the young people who by their presence make their communities and society in general, a better place in which to live. They also acknowledge the endeavours of young people who have faced and overcome challenges in their life.

​There were 24 awards given out on the night.

The Good Counsel students also won the overall award and will go forward to represent the county at the national awards in Portlaoise later this month.

'They were all in shock but absolutely thrilled with their achievement. They have become local celebrities, even making it onto the local radio station!'

A student from the college, Diarmaid Murphy, of Old Ross, is going to Gorodishiche Orphanage as part of The Burren Chernobyl Project.

He has been actively fundraising with all monies going directly to the orphanage.

Diarmaid will pay his own travel and accommodation costs. He will be travelling to Belarus with nine other Good Counsel College students and their teachers as part of their Transition Year in school.

Each student is required to raise funds on their own initiative.

New Ross Standard