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Saying thank you

Concern recently took some time to honour the best fundraising schools in the country.

Hundreds of schools take part in the Concern Fast each year. While the efforts of all schools are greatly appreciated and hugely important, there are often a number of schools whose achievements are nothing short of inspirational.

As a reward for such dedication, Concern organises appreciation days each year to thank the very best fundraising schools in the country. The events are also about encouraging students to continue in the right direction as active global citizens living in Ireland. They also provide an opportunity for students to gain more insight into how their hard work will help improve peoples’ lives in some of the world’s poorest countries.

Two appreciation days were held, in the Galway Omniplex and in UCI Blanchardstown. Schools from all over the country were represented. The students were each presented with a “goody bag” of confectionery, treats and keepsakes as they filed into the cinema.

In Galway, Concern’s Catherine Dunnion spoke to students about her experiences working in Bangladesh and Cambodia. In Dublin, Concern’s Lizzy Noone provided some valuable facts and insight into Concern’s work in India. Then it was time to dig into the candy and popcorn and enjoy the film.

The fun wasn’t over at the end of the movie, however. In Dublin, celebrity guest Ian Dempsey dropped by to spend some time with the students. In Galway, Hector Ó hEochagáin gave an emotional talk on this own experiences in Africa – encouraging all the young attendees to check out the continent themselves.

Then it was raffle time. Some lucky students walked away with mp3 players, digital cameras and top prizes of a Wii games console and a framed national Irish rugby jersey signed by all the players in the squad. Students then made their way back home, hopefully with happy memories of the day and an appreciation of how every person can make a difference in the world.