Transition Year students inspired by Olympic Medal Winners at Zeminar on World Mental Health Day

On Tuesday, October 10th, Transition Year students attended the second annual Zeminar event in Dublin’s RDS. “A life-changing day for the post-millennial Generation Z” was the promise of the organisers.

Indeed, it was a memorable day for TYs as they got to meet Olympic Silver Medal Rowers and Gold medallists in the World Rowing Championships, the O’ Donovan brothers, Gary and Paul. Students described them as inspirational and were encouraged to pursue their goals, never give up, believe in yourself, the importance of teamwork and to follow your dreams.

The visit to the education, empowerment and well-being event coincided with World Mental Health Day. “The well-being of students is vital in today’s busy world.  It is important that they find a balance so that they can achieve their full potential”, said Coordinator of Programmes, Mr. Flynn, who accompanied the students, along with Guidance Counsellor, Ms. Morgan, who organised the visit. “I feel that the students really benefit from hearing the inspirational stories of the various speakers. They definitely got encouragement to aim high and to achieve their dreams”, she said.

Along with meeting the Olympians, there were many positive experiences.

Dr Niall Muldoon, the Ombudsman for Children, whose job it is to make sure children in Ireland are treated fairly and the promotion of children’s rights told them: “You have a right to be heard”.

Homelessness activist, Sister Stanislaus Kennedy, best known for having founded the charity Focus Ireland and Young Social Innovators, encouraged them to be active citizens and to be aware of the plight of the homeless.

Emily Duffy, a young social entrepreneur, did just what Sister Stanislaus said, and became the inventor of a sleeping bag designed to alleviate the problems faced by homeless people. The sleeping bag is made of waterproof, lightweight metallic bubble wrap. The bubbles work to help the bag retain heat.  She said, “No matter what your age, you can make a difference and make a change in the world in a positive way.”

Demilade Adeniran, No-Hate speech ambassador, is an advocate for the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation and highlighted the importance of equality.

Third Level colleges were also in attendance on the day sowing the seeds of future possibilities.  Overall the College and students were delighted with the event and took away a lot of ideas and thoughts for the future.