Coláiste Chilliain students help out in one of the poorest countries in the world

By Maurice Garvey

CLONDALKIN students returned this week from a mid-term trip to Uganda, where they were involved in volunteer work in one of the poorest countries in the world, reports Maurice Garvey.

The group of 17 Coláiste Chilliain Fifth Year students and three teachers, made the trip, in conjunction with Irish charity Nurture Africa.

Colaiste Chillian Uganda compressor

Coláiste Chilliain students who took part in the volunteer work in Uganda

The 10-day expedition was two-and-a-half years in the making, according to Coláiste Chilliain teacher Emily DeStóc, a chief organiser of the sojourn to the East African nation.

“The group decided at the end of second year, they wanted to go.

 

Each student raised €1,500, and altogether the school raised €27,000 for Nurture Africa, which was amazing by the school and by local parents and people who funded it,” said Ms DeStóc.

“We were in the village of Nannasa, working with Nurture Africa, doing charity work, building greenhouses using recycled plastic, visiting vulnerable families in the community, reading to secondary school students and working with vulnerable peer groups of teenagers.”

Susan Quinn, mother of student Chloe Kiernan who went on the trip, called it an “amazing experience” for her daughter and all involved, recalling the many types of fundraisers the group undertook in order to raise funds for the journey.

The other two teachers who took part on the trip were Caitríona de Roiste and Sorcha Ní Dhomhnaill.

Ms DeStóc continued: “It was absolutely an eye-opener. A difficult experience in many ways. There is positive and negative, but I think we all came back a bit less of a princess or prince.

“There was extreme poverty, but then they had a simplicity of life that was fantastic.”

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