Monday, 14 December 2015

Amber Flag Day

Amber Flag

This week we have been preparing for Amber Flag Day which is next week on Friday the 4th. The Amber Flag aims to encourage Schools, Colleges, Clubs, Societies and Organisations to promote and actively bring about a culture change in the promotion of positive mental health within the educational system and other organisations. It is to enhance the already good work that is going on where mental health is concerned by offering an award of a Flag. There is wonderful work going on in schools and clubs etc on an individual basis. What the Amber Flag will do is acknowledge these efforts and unite all schools/clubs/societies/community groups in the promotion of “Positive Mental Health”. 

Positive Mental Health aims to:
A. Promote mental health and well-being for all.
B. Prevent mental health problems through increasing awareness, social support, reducing risk factors such as racism, bullying and isolation.
C. Improving quality of life for students/people with mental health problems by promoting recovery through awareness and education.
The Week Before:
This week we have organised lots of things for Amber Flag Day such as events we are going to do on the day such as a Bake sale, and organised how we can spread positivity throughout the school. We had many ideas such as orange wristbands, dancing fairy's, singing and cardboard cut out where people can stick their head in and a positive message would be written above and on the day all TY's get to wear orange. Our whole year is split into many groups such as website, bake sale, fairies etc.

Pieta House:
All the money we raise goes to Pieta House, Pieta House is a centre for the prevention of self harm and suicide. It was opened nine years ago in Lucan and has helped over 18,000 people in suicidal situations or from engaging in self harm, They have opened up 8 centres across Ireland. In 2003 our founder and former CEO Joan Freeman, a practising psychologist closed down her own counselling business to dedicate her time to help people who were suicidal and help them through their dark time. Pieta House has over 180 therapists and staff and the demand for the service has only gone up, in 2014 over 5,000 people came through their doors looking for help. Every service they provide is free of charge and provide professional help. They are very passionate about their work and over 90% of the income comes from donation's.

Amber Flag Day
Amber flag was an amazing day full of positivity and happiness throughout the school. We started off the day by all going to the library, we were given an orange bracelet to wear for the day and any spare ones we had we gave them to other years in the school. The web committee presented their website to the rest of the year and our vice principal, a photographer from the Liffey champion newspaper came and took our photograph too. We all went out into the courtyard and took a group photo and we used some of the emoji boards to take some funny photos. We then had lunch and a girl from our class brought in two large bottles of Fanta to match our theme of orange to share. After little lunch we put up posters and sang songs with the busking group. Just before big lunch we all set up the bake sale in the hall and the face painting area in the library. Lunch finally came and my group went around taking photos of people using the emoji boards, we passed the busking group and most of the first years were singing the songs and their was a great atmosphere around the school. The bake sale was a  massive success, we sold all the cakes! It was a great day!

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