A team of Transition Year students at Loreto Letterkenny are taking action to raise awareness about social issues that matter in their local community.
The Young Social Innovators (YSI) class has developed a project called Peace of Minds which focuses on the issue of mental health.
The students have set out to raise awareness and help improve the well-being of everyone in the community, which is particularly important due to the ongoing pandemic. The class aims to add a bit of fun and light to life during the pandemic and recognise the goodwill and integrity in those around us.
They aim to achieve this by using a dual approach covering 2 strands:
- Promoting Positive Mental Health.
- Promoting Volunteering.
In order to ‘Promote Positive Mental Health’, these young innovators created two social media accounts to share positive affirmations and messages.
According to the students: “We wanted to set a healthy reminder that it’s ok not to be ok. We shared many helpful quotes and ideas on how to improve your mental health and well-being. For example, we developed a 30-day fitness and mental health challenge, where each day a new simple task is set to complete. We aim to encourage people to take small steps towards creating a more positive mindset. We hope that reading the posts would inspire people to exercise more frequently and take time for themselves which could significantly improve their headspace and mental and physical health”.
The second strand of the project to ‘Promoting Volunteering’ was developed to raise awareness of goodwill in our communities. Students Amy Bovaird, Alisha Cuskelly, Ella McAlary and Maria Soffe developed a project with the Donegal Volunteer Centre (DVC) called “Meet the Local Volunteers”. This project aims to recognise the great work volunteers do in our community and to also encourage others to get involved.
Local volunteers were interviewed by the students to find out what volunteering role they perform, why they volunteer and what volunteering means to them. The interviews were recorded and will be featured on the DVC website and social media.
Eamonn Bonner from DVC stated “We were delighted to work alongside these enthusiastic and hardworking young ladies. Their project is guaranteed to bring a sense of pride to the volunteers by recognising the great work they do. Volunteering can bring a sense of joy and passion into someone’s life, greatly helping them improve their well-being. We believe that the project will encourage and motivate others to get involved in helping improve their community”.
The students are currently taking part in an online editing course with Greg Gorman to develop the skills to edit their videos. They are also working with Donna Kenny, Public Relations Officer with Donegal Local Development Company (DLDC) to develop their public relations skills so they can showcase the great work that they are achieving.
After the editing is completed the video recordings will be released on the DVC website and Facebook page below.