Maura Carroll (Waterford, Co. Waterford), a student at Newtown School, has volunteered with many charities in her community including Down Syndrome Ireland and the Waterford Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Most recently, Maura raised €2,800 for the Hope Foundation and took part in a trip to Kolkata with the Foundation in March 2018. In her home city of Waterford, she started a Cycle Without Age initiative, which helps promote positive intergenerational mental health.

Maura has dedicated much of her time to the promotion of mental health. She is heavily involved in encouraging conversations around mental health at her school to promote positive messaging and active dialogue among pupils. She has planned various initiatives around this topic including a pizza day, a soccer tournament, Schools Go Orange, Cycle Against Suicide, the Five-a-Day for Mental Health and the Mind Your Selfie campaign.

“She has been involved with numerous fundraising and community building activities in school and locally,” shares Karen Keogh, Transition Year Coordinator at Newtown School. “Maura’s empathy and passion for helping others has, in my opinion, been key to her success as a volunteer. She shows a quiet and respectful determination to motivate others and this helps to turn an idea for social innovation into a real social innovation. She has been one of the most proactive young people I have known.”

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