St. Paul's CBS Secondary School

North Brunswick St

Dublin 7

Zeminar Trip 2018

ZeminarThe full 6th Year group, accompanied by Mr Fox, Ms Nolan and Ms O’Dowd spent a very worthwhile day attending Zeminar in the RDS. This has become something of an annual event for senior students in St Paul’s. Zeminar is an event specifically aimed at adolescents which focuses on well-being and mental health. It provides a series of short sharp talks from all manner of inspirational speakers as well as offering a huge variety of workshops, resources and activities, all geared towards helping our young students deal the challenges they will face throughout their lives. 

The boys were especially attentive of a number of speakers such as Deborah Somorin who survived being in care, being homeless, being a mother at the age of 15 to go on to complete her education and to set up her own charity to care for single parents in care. Another speaker to inspire was Damian Browne, who overcame several mental obstacles to have a career as a professional rugby player and who has rowed a small boat across the Atlantic Ocean, all just to push himself to the limit. 

Later speakers included former professional footballers Richie Sadlier and Shane Supple who, along with Elaine Byrnes spoke about youth wellbeing and how they dealt with changes and challenges in their lives; Richie Sadlier even had to navigate his way around a number of questions from the Brunner boys relating to his famous goal in an U18 Euro playoff! 

After a break for lunch and a chance for the boys to explore the stands in the main arena, the afternoon provided two more sporting legends, this tie from the GAA; Colm O’Rourke spoke about the realities of life for young people, that disappointment is part of life and that it is not something that is confined to youth. He also stressed that those in need of help are never alone, although they may feel that way, that their issues are often shared by their peers. Philly McMahon grabbed the boys attention with his story of the diverging paths taken by himself and his brother and how this has been a huge influence on all aspects of his life. 

The experience of listening to these varied and compelling stories has been a valuable one for our boys. As we have come to expect they conducted themselves in a manner that reflects well on them as young men and on the school community as a whole.

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