Senator Aisling Dolan - Strong Voice, New Vision.

Europe visiting Eglish & Ballinasloe

June 30, 2022

Europe visiting Eglish & Ballinasloe

Welcome to children from all over Europe visiting Eglish & Ballinasloe

Eglish National School in Ahascragh welcomed 25 children and their teachers from Croatia, France, Germany & Italy as part of an ERASMUS+ exchange programme. Erasmus+ is the EU's programme to support education, training, youth and sport in Europe.

Liz Mulry, project coordinator said

"The visit to Eglish National School marks the culmination of a project called "Storytelling in Nature", where pupils and teachers from Eglish visited Croatia in October 2019 and Sicily in May 2022, visiting schools and taking part in workshops and cultural events. Unfortunately, due to Covid, planned  visits to Germany and France had to be virtual, as travel was not possible.

These visits are fully funded by the EU and there is no cost to the pupils who travelled. This is a fantastic opportunity for our pupils and teachers to work with our EU partners and share knowledge and good practice. The visitors were really well looked after by Moycarn Lodge & Marina and Colleran Coach & Bus Hire, and by local restaurants, and we're very grateful to the communities of Ballinasloe and Ahascragh."

During their week-long visit to Eglish, the visiting pupils and teachers took part in various activities, such as sharing recipes to create an international cookery book, presenting powerpoints and videos of each school acting out local myths and legends from each country, and a photography competition where pupils take photos of nature. While in school the group learned about Irish Myths and legends.

A Seanchaí visited the school as part of the 'Heritage in Schools' programme and told stories of fairies and Fionn MacCumhaill. They watched video presentations about saving turf, and learned how to foot turf, and visited Dún na Sí the bog in Lough Boora. They learned how to play hurling and Gaelic football and local musicians played Irish music for them in Gallaghers of Ballyfa. They had guided tours of Ballinasloe with Sean Tully and Galway city with Marteen Lane. On Thursday night the school staff, parents and Leas Cathaoirleach Dermot Connolly, Councillor Michael Connolly & Senator Aisling Dolan welcomed the groups to Ballinasloe. 

I’d an opportunity to have an enjoyable European evening at the Moycarn Lodge & Marina in Ballinasloe with teachers and students from Paris, Syracuse in Sicily, Black Forest area of Germany and Croatia.

The ERASMUS+ programme is hosted by Eglish National School in Ahascragh and thank you to the new principal Keith Kelly & Liz Mulry as well as all the teaching team for the organisation for this event.

With the pandemic & lockdown so many of these activities to give children opportunities to travel and learn about different places was stopped. Last week it was heartening to see so many enjoying an evening of music, dancing and a BBQ in the Moycarn.

The ERASMUS+ programme is about introducing our young people to new friends and also the opportunity to travel to different countries and broaden horizons.  This is also open to groups in adult education, youth & sport groups and there is a strong focus on building our knowledge of digital education and the climate action.

Well done to all including the parents, children and teaching staff of Eglish national school for organising this week of activities all around Ballinasloe and Galway city. ERASMUS+ is funded for travel costs so could be an opportunity for more schools & groups to get involved.