Cycle against Suicide

CBS Wexford receives Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador School Award –

On Tuesday last, September 12th, the now annual Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador School Awards ceremony was held at the Royal Hospital, Kilmainham. These awards recognised the immense efforts of 89 schools around the island of Ireland who have completed the Ambassador School Programme, and became actively involved in mental health promotion. The Ambassador School Programme is one aspect of a wide range of Cycle Against Suicide initiatives and programmes, is school-led, and involves the completion of “Five Gears” over the course of a year, all of which are aimed at raising awareness of the message that “It’s OK not to feel OK; and it’s absolutely OK to ask for help”.
The Programme provides a framework for schools to integrate mental health activities into the school plan, and rewards schools who go the extra mile. The Programme also aims to recognise innovative and effective initiatives, and facilitates schools to share and showcase good practice.
At the special reception, CBS Wexford was awarded the prestigious status of Ambassador School by Cycle Against Suicide in recognition of their fulfilment of the Five Gears, and their exceptional commitment to the promotion of positive mental health.Wexford Student Named as Cycle Against Suicide Student Leader

The annual Cycle Against Suicide Student Leader Ambassadors’ Retreat took place in Kippure Estate, Co. Wicklow on Thursday and Friday, August 18th and 19th last.

The Retreat, now in its third year, recognises students for their exceptional contribution to the area of mental health. The aim of the Student Leader Ambassador Programme is to harness the immense leadership potential of these young adults, and empower them to bring the Cycle Against Suicide message, “It’s OK not to feel OK; and it’s absolutely OK to ask for help”, back to their schools and communities. The Student Leaders actively participate in all Cycle Against Suicide activities throughout the year.

Among the group of exceptional students, nominated by their schools and selected from hundreds of applicants, was Patrick Dobbs of CBS, Wexford. Patrick and his fellow Student Leader Ambassadors from all over the island of Ireland gathered to participate in the wide range of workshops, including Media Skills, Outdoor Pursuits, Team Building, Presentation Skills and Leadership Training.

As well as participating in workshops and presentations, students also collaborated to develop a theme for this year’s Student Leaders’ Congress, which will take place in University of Limerick on January 19th, 2017.

Link Teacher Ruth Ivers said, ‘It is a huge honour for CBS Wexford to have a student selected for such a prestigious and worthwhile programme at a national level. We are immensely proud of Patrick’s achievement’.

Among the inspiring guests presenting at this year’s Retreat were Jim Breen, Founder of Cycle Against Suicide, and Ombudsman for Children, Niall Muldoon.

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Cycle against Suicide 2016

Congratulations to all concerned in applying for Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador School Status recently. A comprehensive application outlining all the Mental Health activities that go on in the school were documented and accompanied by a video demonstrating the awareness of  teachers and pupils to these complex issues that can so often impinge upon our lives.

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2015

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Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador school press release

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“CBS students, alongside members of the CBS Wexford Cycling Club attended another successful Cycle Against Suicide 2015 Congress, held in the RDS, Dublin. This is the third year running and students from around the island of Ireland joined forces to help promote positive mental help under the 2014-2015 umbrella theme, Appreciate Your Mind.

Speakers, such as Conor Cusack, Seamus Hennessey, Ellie McNamara, Alan Quinlan and Bressie were courageous and insightful as the discussed the barriers young people face whilst dealing with mental illnesses. They shared their own experiences and were open to showing vulnerability, highlighting for us all the importance of our own uniqueness. 

Bressie offered up a series of steps, that we all could do with following:

1. Stop judging others

2. Show self compassion

3. Before you get out of bed, before you start your day, list 30 things you are grateful for.

4. Show gratitude

Throughout the day schools from around Ireland show-cased their on-going work and enthusiasm for continually helping to convey the message that ‘It’s okay not to feel okay, and it’s absolutely okay to ask for help.’ The CBS Wexford students played their unique roll, and on stage performed their Human Bicycle which they had previously taken around Wexford Town promoting positive mental health awareness.

Sonia O’Sullivan showed true humility, as Jim Breen described it, when sharing with us her sporting journey, both through the highs and the lows. She clearly illustrated a drive for winning, whilst acknowledging that not being number one is doesn’t mean you have not succeeded.

The day was rounded up by a remarkable set of speakers, Mark Pollock and his fiance Simone George who described their recent challenge of finding a cure for paralysis, as a direct result of Mark’s back being broken in an accident a few years previously. Mark Pollack turned blind at the age of 20 & yet his charisma and willingness to live and achieve the impossible is infectious. Their story helped send all of us away on a positive and optimistic note.

The Cycle Against Suicide 2015 journey begins in Belfast on the Monday 27th April 2015, travelling through the Midlands this year, and returns to Dublin on Sunday 10th May 2015.

Please see http://www.cycleagainstsuicide.com/your-route/ for further details.

“Together we can break the cycle of suicide on the island of Ireland.’

Many thanks to all of those who have gotten involved, and continue to be involved. Your support is very welcome.”

 

Well done to Ms Ivers, staff and students involved in the Cycle Against Suicide campaign. The school has been successful in achieving Cycle Against Suicide Ambassador School Status for 2014. This title is awarded to schools who show exceptional leadership in the area of positive mental health as well as promoting help-seeking behaviour in young people through the Cycle Against Suicide message that ‘it’s ok not to feel ok and it’s absolutely ok to ask for help’. 

Representatives of the school were invited to an award ceremony at The Clock Tower, Department of Education and Science, Marlborough Street, Dublin on the 12th of September.  Below are some photos of the day.

 

Thank you to Ms. Ivers for organising our participation and to Mr. Larry Coleman for transporting the bikes to Carlow and from Waterford, also to the parents and friends who cycled with us.

 

“Cycle Against Suicide” Congress 2014. Over 4,000 students from around the island of Ireland enjoyed amazing performances from Dublin Gospel Choir & The Heathers. Student projects highlighting the message ‘It’s okay not to be okay. It’s absolutely okay to ask for help’ were broadcast throughout the day. The atmosphere was electric and the cyclists and supporters alike are geared up for their participation in the Carlow- Waterford leg of the Cycle Against Suicide in April 2014. Bring it on!”

‘The CycleAgainstSuicide initiative came to fruition as the result of Jim Breen’s appearance on RTE’s Secret Millionaire over 2years ago. He became aware of the need to STOP the cycle, and START the process of promoting positive mental health for all the people of Ireland.

The  CycleAgainstSuicide is making it’s way around Ireland over the next 2weeks and will be arriving into Dublin on Saturday 4th May.

A group of CBS Transition Year students volunteered to cycle out towards Enniscorthy and meet the 250 cyclists as they approached Wexford Town on Tuesday, 23rd April 2013.  Many of the cyclists were over-whelmed by the positive and pro-active part our TYs took to come meet the larger group, especially with the diverse range of bikes the students showed up on!

CBS is delighted to be supporting positive mental health in an active manner.

For more information on breaking the cycle, visit the CycleAgainstSuicide website, www.cycleagainstsuicide.com

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