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St. Oliver’s Community College declared as Champion School of Sanctuary

Congratulations to St. Oliver’s Community College in Drogheda, Co. Louth as Champion School of Sanctuary:

In a heartwarming celebration of diversity and inclusivity, St. Oliver’s Community College has been declared a Champion School of Sanctuary.

On March 21st 2024, the School of Sanctuary Monitoring Team visited St. Oliver’s Community College in Drogheda, Co. Louth, where they were warmly welcomed by teachers, students, and parents. The visit aimed to monitor the school’s readiness to become a Champion School of Sanctuary. The monitoring team engaged with students and staff to learn about their efforts toward promoting diversity and inclusion within the school community. Following a successful monitoring visit, the team met

Enthusiastic Participation and Warm Welcome

The event commenced with interactions with students, providing insights into their experiences and initiatives promoting diversity and inclusion. The students notably displayed artwork that embodied diversity and inclusion through various mediums, such as art, videos, music, and a food festival, creating a warm and inclusive atmosphere.

Key Discussions and Cultural Representation

Dr. Veronica Crosbie Chair of Places of Sanctuary who was part of the monitoring team initiated discussions with students regarding the advantages of involvement in the diversity committee, drawing out valuable perspectives on the importance of cultural representation within the school. Students’ genuine belief in this value was a motivating factor for initiating change. They eagerly expressed their desire to raise awareness about their culture while embracing the opportunity to learn about diverse cultures. This enthusiasm fosters interaction and is a powerful tool in combating racism through exchanging knowledge and understanding of each other’s lives.

Inclusive Programmes and Cultural Displays

St. Oliver’s inclusive breakfast programme was highlighted as contributing to a sense of equality among students. Students wearing traditional attire showcased their cultures through a food festival and cultural displays, fostering a rich multicultural environment. Music instruments displayed in the school’s hall added to the ambience of local culture. One student noted how music facilitated connections among students, sharing personal experiences of writing poetry and songs inspired by their cultural heritage.

Students at St. Oliver’s Community College wearing their traditional dresses and serving food of their own cultures

Student Leadership and Initiatives

The student group leading the visit consisted of elected or peer-suggested members, totalling 14 individuals, showcasing the school’s commitment to student involvement and leadership. Student-elected leaders spearheaded events such as fundraising initiatives and educational campaigns, emphasising the importance of fostering a welcoming and safe environment for all. Short videos depicting the stories of students from diverse backgrounds, such as Afghanistan, were well-received, promoting empathy and understanding among peers. Literature plays a vital role in fostering cultural awareness. One of the students’ poignant poems addressing racism garnered recognition from fellow students, faculty, and visitors alike.

Furthermore, the visit underscored St. Oliver’s Community College’s commendable efforts towards promoting diversity, inclusion, and cultural understanding. The enthusiastic participation of students and staff reflects a genuine commitment to creating a welcoming and safe environment.

The visit provided valuable insights into the school’s dedication to fostering a culture of acceptance and appreciation for diversity within educational institutions.

As a result of a successful school of sanctuary monitoring visit, the monitoring team unanimously declared  St. Oliver’s Community College  as the first Champion School of Sanctuary in Co. Louth and 29th nationally.

You can click here If you like to learn more about St. Oliver’s Community College and their journey as a Champion School of Sanctuary.

Here are some additional photos from the monitoring day where different food, cultures and backgrounds were celebrated at St. Oliver’s Community College: 

Students serving food from their culture

Learn More:

To learn more about Schools of Sanctuary and join the School of Sanctuary Network, you can reach us via: