Ten girls from our Peace and Justice group accompanied by Ms. McConalogue were very privileged to have had the opportunity to attend the Annual Regional Edmund Rice Education Beyond Borders advocacy gathering in Croke Park, Dublin on Thursday 21st of March. The event was
called “Walk in my Shoes” and it was excellent as young people from all over Ireland came together and everyone had a voice.
We all thought that this was a very educational and effective event as we heard many informative and inspirational, firsthand accounts and experiences on important topics such homelessness, HIV and the refugee crisis.
Samita Olajuti spoke of how she emigrated from Nigeria and of her ongoing experience of homelessness in Dublin as he is living in emergency accommodation. She shared with us the effect this has on her and her family on a day to day basis. An adult called James then shared with us how he ended up homeless having had what he described as the ‘perfect life’. He was married and said how his wife and him and a lovely house, two cars and several holidays a year. However he said that his wife told him to leave one day because of his addiction problem. He shared how hard
it was being homeless and living in hostels which were often dangerous and scary to be in. James spoke of the lack of recognition and support for homelessness people.
Three sixth year students also spoke about how they became refugees from Syria and Afghanistan at such a young age and shared their experience of their life when war commenced in their countries. Hearing these first hand
experiences had a huge impact on everyone at the event as they were so touching. We all took something home with us and realised how there are real people behind the stories we hear on the news about homelessness and the
After hearing each story, each school spoke on the topic amongst themselves and had to write about our thoughts and opinions on the situations, and what we would do to help the people in these situations. Each group stood up
and discussed and shared their opinions with the other schools present.
The Edmund Rice schools trust provided the students and staff with a lovely lunch. Finally, the last activity was to team up with another school and come up with an idea to help the world and our environment and climate. Our school paired up with James Street CBS in Dublin, where we shared ideas and told them of all the environmental awareness things we have been doing as part of our Peace and Justice group, including taking part in the Tramore St.Patrick’s Day parade. We invited them to do a beach clean-up in Tramore with us and exchanged emails. The date and time are yet to be confirmed.
Overall, it was a lovely day and it was amazing to see young people from all over Ireland come together and have a voice to make our world a better
By Enid Awusi Dumevi and Lauren Barrett.