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Ukrainians hail the kindness of the Irish

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By Natalia Krasnenkova

War displaced Ukrainians had their first experience of the Ring of Kerry last weekend and it is fair to say that were well impressed.

COACH TOUR:Driver Con Riordan with his Ukrainian passengers on the Ring of kerry last weekend.Photo: Natalia Krasnenkova

Philip O’Callaghan of O’Callaghan Coaches & Chauffeur Services organised the trip for 50 Ukrainian

“I want to start immediately by thanking the organisers, thanks to whom this exciting journey took place,”said Yaroslava Shkurko, a teacher from Kyiv.

“I'll start with Maeve O’Connell, she works at our front desk. With Maeve, we practice learning English. It's nice to talk when she has a few minutes. When I jokingly called her my teacher, she was not confused and invited me to a lesson the next day.

“Very nice person, many thanks for the sincerity, positive attitude and desire to help solve any issues.

Of course, our driver Con Riordan is a model of tolerance and restraint. Watching us with interest, he always tried to be close and did his job perfectly, especially on the steep mountain parts of the route. We applaud.”

They visited Kerry bog village where they were able to get acquainted with the history and life of Irish society of the 19th century.

“It is nice to note that our village houses were also covered with reeds. And the interior decoration of houses is very similar to Ukrainian traditions,” added Yaroslava.

They stopped for lunch at O’Carroll’s Cove restaurant on the coast where there was another pleasant surprise. In addition to a wonderful dinner, they received a musical gift - a local band played several songs for them.

Ukrainians are a singing nation and repaid the locals for their hospitality with a mini concert of Ukrainian songs.

“I am so inspired by the nature of Ireland that I want to insert a memory card with a recording of a trip to the Ring of Kerry and review it over and over again. Green meadows, ivy-covered houses, mountains, lakes, the ocean. You would see my son rolling up his pants, running along the ocean, and my daughter throwing pebbles into the water. But the most important impression on me is made by the people who live here. This trip was a great gift for us, but most of the people who took part in it saw us for the first time. Now I see that I want to instil in my children the same kindness that I see every day in the Irish,” said Yulia Dolia from Kyiv.

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Top awards for innovative students

By Michelle Crean Killarney students proved that their projects can make a positive impact after being honoured at the Young Social Innovators of the Year Ireland (YSI) Awards. The five […]

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By Michelle Crean

Killarney students proved that their projects can make a positive impact after being honoured at the Young Social Innovators of the Year Ireland (YSI) Awards.

The five members of ‘Operation Red’ in St Brigid’s Secondary School were celebrating this week after receiving a national Bronze Award for their project which is raising awareness about the lack of knowledge surrounding menstrual disorders. Their goal is to encourage open discussion on these issues, so no woman ever feels alone. The team will receive a prize bursary of €750, which can be put towards developing their idea and increasing the impact of their innovation.

Young Social Innovators is a non-profit organisation that believes in the power of youth. Its vision is to empower, equip and inspire young people to change the world for good. The girls’ project was one of 34 shortlisted from over 400 YSI groups around Ireland.

“As part of our project we’re in the process of developing resources for the SPHE classes in our school,” Transition Year student Anna Cashman told the Killarney Advertiser.

“We’ll try it here as a pilot project and branch out to other schools.”

She added that plans so far include educating students by putting an information booklet together using HSE and NHS advice.

“It’s important to have the right information as it’s a very under researched issue. We have had a positive response to it.”

Cait Fitzgerald Healy from YSI arrived to the school as a surprise to the group and presented the girls with their trophy towards the end of the online ceremony. There was huge excitement all round! Teacher and mentor Catherine O’Donoghue also received the ‘Let them Shine’ award for her involvement with YSI over the last five years.

MAKE OUR WORLD SAFER AWARD

Picking up the ‘Make Our World Safer Award’, a team from St Brendan’s College was recognised for its ‘One Punch Can Kill’ project, which aims to combat toxic masculinity and raise awareness amongst young men of the seriousness of ‘one punch attacks’.

When researching the issue, the team found that many perpetrators rarely reoffend and the percentage of male-on-male violence in society is extremely high. The group examined the route cause of the issue, which stems from a variety of factors, and wanted to raise awareness that spontaneous and random ‘one punch attacks’ can have serious and life-changing consequences.

Amongst its many actions, the team embarked on media outreach, designed and delivered student workshops, created a poster campaign, held an Anti Violence Week and is currently working on a children’s book in an effort to promote the important message that ‘One Punch Can Kill’.

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Pres footballers are in seventh heaven

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The St Brigid’s Presentation Second Year footballers were crowned County Junior B champions on Friday last following a superb seven-goal victory over Mercy Mounthawk Tralee in the Ballymac sunshine.

The girls hit the ground running, bagging two quick goals from the boots of Lily O’Shaughnessy and Niamh Cantillon.

The Pres defence was solid and dogged throughout and managed to keep Mounthawk from breaching their goal for the duration. Abby Cronin scored three goals and a point to torment the oppostion and Niamh Cantillon scored a second goal plus a point to keep the Killarney school well in front.

Further scores from Muireann Healy and a final goal from Lara O’Neill gave us a final score of 7-4 to 0-11.

It was an excellent performance from the entire team, including the substitutes who all played their part. Captain Eve Culhane proudly accepted the cup on behalf of the team, and St Brigid’s, at the end of the game and joyous celebrations followed.

Congratulations to all the players and to their trainers: Mr Counihan, Ms Healy and Ms Brosnan.

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