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In Pictures: Laois secondary school students present 200 care packages to homeless charity

200 care packages have been handed over to a homeless charity thanks to the kindness of some secondary school students in Laois.

The lads in Portlaoise CBS, from First Year to Leaving Cert, came together over the last couple of weeks to gather essential items that the incredible members of Portlaoise Action To Homelessness (PATH) will distribute to the most vulnerable.

It all began just over a week ago when teacher Eimear Lewens, in the course of a conversation with her First Year English students on homelessness, suggested doing something to help.

The class were on board and pretty soon the whole school got in on the act.

Ms Lewens liaised with those involved in PATH as to what items would be most beneficial and the students came up trumps with toiletries, underwear, socks, hats, chocolate bars and many other items flooding into her classroom.

Ms Lewens’ SPHE students also made up Christmas Cards with little well wishes for the receiver that will be placed in each care package.

And then yesterday, Wednesday December 2, the lads presented all of their care packages to some of the team from PATH.

Reflecting on it all, Ms Lewens says she found the whole experience of how all the students worked together to help others ‘overwhelming’ and expressed that the school was extremely proud of them.

She said: “I found the whole experience quite overwhelming as the boys were all so generous and helpful as were all the staff.

“Also as a teacher, I’m so lucky to be working and am aware of so much hardship at the moment so I was so happy to be able to help in any way at all.

“The real heroes are nurses and shop workers and voluntary organisations like PATH – everyone who is on the frontline really.

“I think it’s important to always be kind, especially now. Every little token helps.

“Our boys here in the CBS went above and beyond to help in the collection to help the vulnerable people in and around Portlaoise and we are all so very proud of them.”

Fair play to all involved!

SEE ALSO – The new face seeking to win a place on the Laois GAA County Board

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.