Carrying water containers filled from the River Cong, 60 students began one of the most educational walks of their lives last week.
Walk for Water, an annual event celebrating the value of fresh water in our lives, proved to be an eye opener for students at Presentation Colleges in Headford and Tuam, and Gort Community School.
Irish Water and Green-Schools teamed up to raise awareness of the 2.2 billion people around the world living without access to safe drinking water.
Part of this was achieved by hosting walks mimicking the conditions many have to endure daily, including one in Cong Woods on the Galway/Mayo border.
With a heavy bag on her back and flanked by students carrying water in recycled milk cartons Colette Flanagan, a Geography teacher at Presentation College Headford was one of those who completed the trek through Cong Woods.
“It was such an educational event. On the bus home the students said they found the walk tiring,” Colette said.
“I just reminded them that in some countries people have to walk much longer, maybe twice a day in scorching heat for water. We had a leisurely walk with a stop to enjoy treats.”
“The walk reminded us all of the importance of access to clean water and how we should be working together to protect and conserve such a precious resource in this country.”
Green-Schools Officer Robert Nelson said that the experience always has a visible effect on students who take part.
“they go home with a greater awareness of what water scarcity is, how important conservation and sustainable development has become,” he said.
“And, of course, with a greater appreciation for the beautiful surrounds of places like Cong Woods.”