Dublin changemakers shine bright in National Young Social Innovators Awards

by Alison O'Hanlon
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Students from Holy Family School for the Deaf, Cabra and Portmarnock Community School, achieved national recognition in the Young Social Innovators of the Year Awards which took place at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin this week. 

The group received the Open & Equal Communities Award and an additional Advocacy Award for their project entitled ‘ISL (Irish Sign Language) Signed Nursey Rhymes’.

The Open and Equal Communities Challenge winners took innovative actions in promoting inclusion for the Deaf Community by creating ISL videos signing Nursery Rhymes to teach young hearing children sign language at preschool age. The team has also written a campaign letter for ISL to be included on the national curriculum.

Students from Portmarnock Community School received the Global Citizens Award for their project entitled ‘SAOR Free the Flow’.

The Portmarnock students felt passionately about the promotion of education and management around the menstrual cycle. To promote a more sustainable approach to sanitary products, they developed reusable pads to supply to students and teachers in Lesotho and taught them how to make the pads while on their TY visit to the country.

Student changemakers shine bright at National Young Social Innovators Awards
Pictured are Anna Keogh and Jenna Corcoran, Portmarnock Community School, Co.Dublin.

Thirty-seven teams from post primary schools throughout Ireland were selected to take part in a rigorous pitching process in April and the 17 overall and individual category winners were announced on stage by the Awards co-presenters, broadcaster Zara King and former Hometown boyband member Dayl Cronin.

Commenting on the range and high standard of this year’s entries for the Young Social Innovators of the Year Awards, CEO of YSI, Roger Warnock, said, “The incredible quality of ideas submitted this year led to a higher number of teams being selected for the final pitches.  Each one of them demonstrated the creative thinking, passion and teamwork needed to find impactful solutions to social issues affecting their communities. 

Students from Holy Family School for the Deaf, Cabra.

“The support from teachers, parents, families and YSI guides is essential to the successful coordination of these social innovation projects and we’re so grateful to them for their ongoing commitment.  

“It’s wonderful to see so many teams at today’s Awards and to recognise their energy and passion.  Our partners and judges are as excited and encouraged by the winning projects as the team at YSI and I have no doubt that the future is in safe hands with these incredible young people from Dublin.”

For more information about Young Social Innovators, see www.youngsocialinnovators.ie.

Featured Image: Jake Egan and Chloe Drennan from The Holy Family School for the Deaf, Cabra.

Pictures Shane O’Neill / Coalesce

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