A Student Report on Conference 2015

Le Chéile Report

The Le Chéile Schools' Trust is an organisation that unifies the schools of thirteen religious congregations.

The aim of the Trust is to work in unison on the legal, financial and inspirational role that has previously been carried out individually by the congregations.

This year the AGM took place in the Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone on 5th and 6th February. The Principal and one or two students from the participating schools were invited to attend. The theme of the conference this year was 'Pay It Forward'.

While the school principals and the chairpersons of the boards of management were attending conference presentations, the one hundred students took part in various workshops.  These workshops involved students showing what 'Pay It Forward' meant to them in their respective schools through art, music, drama, photography and poetry.  We as participating students were asked to discuss and present our views and ideas in the form of art posters, photo presentations, original songs, short plays and original poems to the principals and chairpersons of the various boards.

On arrival on the Thursday evening we mixed with lots of other students who were part of the Le Chéile Trust, through singing in a large choir and participating in a table quiz.  Friday afternoon finished with a number of presentations by the students to the conference delegates on the materials they had developed at the workshops.

At the end of the conference we and Ms. Cavanagh felt inspired to spread the word of 'Pay It Forward' and to encourage the students in Santa Sabina to try to make a random act of kindness in our school.

Beth Heneghan and Gemma Kearney.

Le Cheile Conference Gemma Kearney

FCJ TY Students Co-ordinate Bunclody's Shoebox Appeal

Bunclody  TY Students Show their Caring Side

Monday 16th November saw the culmination of the Team Hope Christmas Shoebox Appeal at FCJ Secondary School Bunclody when 1349 Christmas shoeboxes were delivered to the Wexford depot  from which they will be packed on to a lorry destined for Eastern Europe.

There is a long tradition of involvement in the Christmas shoebox appeal at FCJ Secondary School Bunclody. Each year the Transition year students take on the role of co-ordinating the project under the guidance of Sr. Madeleine Hayes (FCJ) and Ms. Una Osborne (T.Y. co-ordinator). In the current year over fifty students participated in this project.

Next month millions of children over the world will be preparing for Christmas and the coming of Santa Claus. Families gather to celebrate the greatest gift of all, the gift of a baby born in a stable. It is a time of being together and for the children of great excitement, giving and getting love and presents from family and friends. But for many children across Europe Christmas Day is like any other day in the year. Nothing special just a struggle to get through the day, with temperatures as low as -20 degrees Celsius. There are no warm fires, no trees, no Christmas pudding, no Christmas presents just struggling to get through. It is a bleak, cold day, with little hope for the future.

Irish charity, Team Hope has made a practical response to the plight of needy children. Inspired by the Gospel stories of helping others, Team Hope is a Christian relief and development organisation that specialises in meeting the needs of victims of war, poverty, natural disaster and disease while sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ.  It provides critically needed aid such as food, water, clothing, shelter and medical care, all in Christ's name.  The charity has been supported by top Irish sporting personalities like Katie Taylor and Paul O’Connell.  This year about two million shoeboxes filled with Christmas presents will go from Ireland and Britain mainly to the former Eastern Europe region.

As fifteen/ sixteen year olds the majority of our Transition Year group grew up with the Christmas shoe box appeal.  In early October lists were compiled of all of the primary schools that our TY students had attended. We then set about contacting these schools and inviting them to participate in the Christmas Shoebox Appeal with FCJ.

Students from FCJ co-ordinate the delivery of information leaflets to these schools and the collection of completed shoeboxes.  Students in our own school were also invited to donate a shoe box/gift.

The beauty of this project lies in its simplicity – a gift from one child to another.

This project would not be possible without the help and support of so many, and to that end we thank school management and staff of FCJ Bunclody, school management and staff of participating schools, parents who have provided transport, FCJ students, Sr. Madeleine Hayes FCJ, David Raleigh, Liam Martin, Liam Kavanagh, Ivan Byrne (transport of boxes to Wexford depot) and Lorna Burt (Co-ordinator – Wexford depot). But above all we thank all those who so generously donated Christmas shoebox gifts. Your gift will make a difference. 





Ursuline Sligo Visits the Web Summit

Web Summit 2015

This year, Ireland had the honour of hosting the prestigious ‘Web Summit 2015. In four years, the web summit has grown from 400 attendees to ever 22,000 from more than 110 countries. It’s been called “the best technology conference on the planet”.

On Tuesday the 3rd of November, 40 students from 1st year and Transition Year in Ursuline College Sligo had the pleasure of attending the event. They arrived at the RDS just before the start of the innovative conference.  As the crowd settled down, a countdown was initiated.

Throughout the evening, speakers touched on a variety of subjects, from curing cancer to stamping out bullying in schools. Each speaker had one thing in common: they all believed that their business idea came from a personal belief and passion.

The first speaker, Riley Ennis, a young man from America told his poignant story of how his sister fell ill with cancer. He told the audience how he combined his three obsessions of marine, Immunity and cancer to pursue all avenues to find a cure. Scott Harrison told them how he gave up all his wealth to devote his life to helping third world countries receive basic clean water. The students also heard of two primary school girls Chloe and Caitlyn, who devised a wristband connected to an app entitled ‘Bullybug’ which alerted teachers if someone was being bullied.  All through the evening’s talks, the students were encouraged to ‘Prove their Passion’. 

it was a very inspirational conference that touched and impressed all the students attending. The evening was truly informative and hopefully when the event is back in Dublin in the future, there will be an Ursuline College student on the stage inspiring others. 

Aoife Devlin 1st Year and Aoife Gallagher TY 

web summit

More Shoebox Stories from around the Country

Christmas Shoe Box Appeal

The annual Operation Christmas Shoe Box Campaign was once again a huge success in Ursuline College, Sligo. Students from all year groups brought in shoe boxes for boys and girls in developing countries. A total of 185 boxes were collected. This was a fantastic response and a huge thank you to all involved.

The First Year students had a talk from Carol Hennessey from Team Hope which is responsible for co-ordinating the Shoe Box Appeal in Ireland. Carol shared videos and pictures of the children receiving their presents and this touched the hearts of all of our first years. It gave them a deep appreciation of just how fortunate they are. Team hope is an organisation dependent on volunteers and so we thank Carol for her inspirational talk.

shoe boxes


Shoe box 3


Concert at CPC Kilcullen

Fr Peter McVerry accepts a cheque from Katelyn Hegarty Kelly a 4th year student in Cross & Passion College Killcullen for just over €500, part of the proceeds of the recent concert by boyband Taken. A similar amount of money raised at the event was donated to Crosscare.

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St Louis Secondary School Dundalk Summer Newsletter

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St Louis Secondary School Dundalk celebrating some of the work, successes and achievements of our students and staff since Jan. 2015

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