On the 9th of April 2019, the 3 Arena was host to the Cycle Against Suicide Student Leaders’ Congress 2019, where there was a full house of around 6,500 student representatives from around the country. The Cycle Against Suicide committee and the Headstrong committee from DCC were in attendance. It was a culmination of a successful years’ work from both committees.
The Congress involved lots of different speakers and talks which discussed a variety of issues that students face today. They talked about issues such as mental health, social anxiety and social media, stigma, resilience, drugs and alcohol and how it affects the developing brain.
One of the central topics focused on was on mental health. They discussed the topic and educated everyone about how important positive mental health is and reinforced the message that “It’s Ok not to feel Ok” and it’s absolutely ok to ask for help.
There was also a talk about social media and social anxiety, and a young speaker was brave enough to share her experience with social media and social anxiety. She described how she used to feel pressured and how she felt alone when in reality she wasn’t when she realised there were so many people who were in the same boat as she was.
Another speaker spoke about addiction and how it affects the developing brain and educated young people about drugs and alcohol.
To celebrate the event and mental health, Kodaline and the Academic performed which created a positive affirming atmosphere. We were delighted to see former DCC student, James Kirwan on stage and really appreciate his shout out to the school. We are very proud of all James has achieved.
Overall, the day made a great impact on us. It has shown us that we are never alone, how important it is to look after ourselves and each other and remembering that it’s good to talk.
By Liam Shortall, TY Journalism and Cycle Against Suicide Committee member
Thanks to Ms. Gentles for accompanying students and for the photos!