On Sunday 31st January, Transition year students from Presentation Ballingarry were privileged to be invited to assist the Senior Citizens Social committee at their annual Christmas party. Since September these students have been striving to raise awareness on the issue of “Cherishing our elderly neighbours and relatives” and have chosen this topic for their Young Social innovators Project. A social innovator is someone who uses their creativity and talents to make a difference. Working with others in a team students explore an issue of concern, get to understand it and come up and do something innovative to address that concern. The students together with teacher and YSI leader Ms Teresa Regan explored a number of issues before all agreed that it was vital in this age of crime against the elderly, loneliness and isolation to cherish those people to whom they felt they owed so much.
Students then contacted Cllr Imelda Goldsboro who welcomed the student’s enthusiasm and invited them to open an evening on positive mental health. Students prepared a movement which they presented on the night. The aim of their presentation was to highlight how people cannot sit in silence but work together to protect the most vulnerable in our community – the elderly. Following this, students were then invited to participate in the Christmas market where they raised €200 from selling crafts and pastries. This money was donated to Ballingarry’s Senior Citizen’s Committee and bags of kindling were purchased from a local supplier for the guests at the Christmas party.
The party which is organised by the Senior Citizens’ committee led by Mrs. Alice Goldsboro was a truly wonderful day for all involved. It was a day which celebrated Ballingarry’s elderly parishioners and the Transition year students enjoyed every minute of the day from serving the meals to providing deserts to dancing and entertaining. Already students in 3rd year are looking forward to having the opportunity to take part when they are in TY next year.
Students look forward to continuing their links with their new friends at their monthly gatherings in the parish hall.