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*Molly Quinton, Luke Flynn, Darren Hurley, Ryan Perez, Orlaith Ahern. 

St. Patrick’s Comprehensive School were announced as the Best Stand-Alone Project winners in the Walk in My Shoes Mission Possible Awards.

The Shannon school was the only Clare representation on the shortlist for the national awards which aims to celebrate schools who promote positive mental health. They were pitted alongside Heywood Community School in County Laois and St. Joseph’s Secondary School in County Louth.

Winners of the award were announced in late April through an online ceremony. Taking first place in their category, the Shannon school will receive a €600 cheque, a trophy and a certificate.

“It means a huge amount to the students and staff of The Comp for it to get national recognition. It was a bright part of a difficult year for everyone involved and contributions to the website continued throughout lockdown. It’s a special thing to know that the project helped both the people it was created for and those who created it,” Transition Year teacher Jacquie Murphy explained.

Last December, the school launched a new initiative which used digital technology to allow nursing home residents to experience activities like walking, cooking and playing with pets again. The project started with TY students, fusing together with the Leaving Cert Applied class and the school’s photography club. Linking up with Carrigoran Nursing House, the students delivered something special for close to one-hundred residents at Christmas time.

Since winning the award, the nursing home has offered its commendation and thanks to a school in which it shares a longstanding relationship with. Each year, traditional choir singing organised by the school takes place at the Newmarket-on-Fergus facility.

The school outlined that it intends on putting the €600 towards a new audio-visual club in the school so that students can continue to peruse video editing, podcasting and other work for their own well-being and that of others. “The project has also been entered into another competition called Digital Champions. The results of this competition are out on Wed the 12th but we are more than happy with our current win,” Jacquie added.

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