Students and teachers from St Mel’s College travelled to the University of Limerick to attend the 2017 Cycle Against Suicide Student Leaders’ Congress.
The Congress focused on raising awareness of the message ‘It’s OK not to feel OK; and it’s absolutely OK to ask for help’, and promoting help-seeking behaviour in young people.
This year’s Congress was the biggest to date, with over 6,000 students and teachers attending over two days in UL.
This year’s guests included Connacht rugby coach, Pat Lam, Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People, Helen Mc Entee, with entertainment provided by The Strypes and Orla Gartland.
“We’re thrilled with the reaction to our biggest Congress yet,” said broadcaster and Cycle Against Suicide CEO, Colm Hayes.
The Congress theme was “Share The Journey” and students at St Mel’s engaged with this theme to design a project and promote positive mental health within their school community.
This project part fulfils the requirement for the prestigious award of Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador School, which St Mel’s is hoping to receive at the end of this school year.
“Attending this year’s Congress was massively worthwhile,” said Hazel Concar, teacher at St Mel’s.
She added, “It was a really enjoyable day, but it also carried a very important message; that our mental health, just like our physical health, needs to be cared for.
“Our students really took this year’s theme to heart, and worked very hard to raise awareness of the Cycle Against Suicide message in school, which for us, was the most important aspect of our involvement.”
The 2017 Cycle Against Suicide begins on Sunday, April 23 and concludes on Saturday, May 6.