Transition Year students represented Killarney Community College at this year’s Young Social Innovators (YSI) ‘Speakout’, which took place in Cork City Hall recently.
The senior cycle students, part of the school’s YSI group, chose two issues they feel very passionate about, ‘Be Dementia Aware’ to raise awareness about dementia, and ‘Aid For Life’, to promote the importance of knowing First Aid.

The ‘Be Dementia Aware’ group, made up of six students, believed that the issue needed to be explored and want to create an environment where everyone can support people with dementia and their loved ones through their difficult times, explained Lorraine Crowley, teacher and YSI guide.

“The TY students completed research to find out the level of knowledge and awareness of dementia the students in the school already possessed.

“These Young Social Innovators were photographed and interviewed with Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD at the ‘Speakout’ and also won an award for ‘Best Props’ on the day.”

‘Be Dementia Aware’ also aims to promote information about brain health and ways to prevent dementia. The group are organising many events within the school during YSI week, April 8-12, to promote the importance of brain health including a quiz, orienteering and an ‘Alztalk’ for students and teachers. They are also having a bake sale and purple ribbon day and all proceeds will go to the Rockmount Care Centre, Kilgarvan.
The second project, ‘Aid For Life’, aims to promote the importance of knowing First Aid, she explained.
“This group of students have also completed research to find out the level of knowledge teachers and students have in Killarney about First Aid. Their main focus is ensuring all teachers have the skills required. They believe it should be an essential part of teacher training.
“These Young Social Innovators are extremely passionate about this awareness campaign and are very excited to get their voice further out to Kerry and continue to create a positive influence in the community,” she said.
Lorraine herself, received an award for the second year in a row for the most inspirational YSI guide to her students, for encouraging and motivating them throughout their projects.

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