PAL Anita Dooley receiving her Civic Merit Award from Avril Ryan and John Cunningham

34 President’s Award Leaders from all over Ireland celebrated at Gaisce’s Recognition Awards Ceremony

On Saturday 28th January 2023, Gaisce – The President’s Award held a special Award Ceremony, in recognition of 34 President’s Award Leaders from all over Ireland who have graciously supported young people to achieve their potential. The Award Ceremony took place at Farmleigh House in the Phoenix Park, Dublin.

Gaisce’s Civic Merit Award honours President’s Award Leaders (PALs) who have supported young people to take part in the Gaisce programme for more than five years. Retiring PALs and PALs who mentored a Gold Awardee were also celebrated and commended for supporting and encouraging young people on their Gaisce journey.

The ceremony was MC’d by comedian, writer and podcaster Julie Jay and the guest speaker at the event was author and world-renowned immunologist and Professor of Biochemistry Professor Luke O’Neill.

Comedian Julie Jay

Professor Luke O’Neill

Speaking about the Awardees, Avril Ryan, Acting CEO of Gaisce – The President’s Award said, “Gaisce are delighted to celebrate the work of our President’s Award Leaders. Their dedication to the principles and outcomes of the Gaisce programme ensures the continued value society places upon the personal development and wellbeing of young people and their achievements, whilst also promoting Gaisce’s vision that young people have every opportunity to dream big and fulfil their potential.”

She continued, “For many young people a Gaisce Award is often the first time they receive any recognition for their achievements. A Gaisce Award recognises the skills, volunteering, leadership, and other qualities of Gaisce participants, talents that may never have been discovered and honed without their participation in this unique and holistic non-formal education Award”.

Acting CEO of Gaisce, Avril Ryan

Gaisce Council Chairperson, John Cunningham

A special message from the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins was read by Chair of Gaisce – The President’s Award John Cunningham, “The leadership of all of you has undoubtedly played a significant role in the success of the programme and the growth and development of the participants. The dedication and hard work that goes into the planning and execution of the Gaisce journey is given evidence in the distinguished achievements of the participants. It is with great pleasure and a sense of gratitude that I send my warmest congratulations and my sincere appreciation for your valued contribution to Gaisce.”

Brian Mullens receiving his Civic Merit Award from Avril Ryan and John Cunningham

Clare Molloy and Philomena Molloy

Barbara Gleeson, Geraldine O’Reilly and Development Officer Mary Yore

Cuisle Forde, Laoise, Professor Luke O’Neill and Emma-Matthews

Congratulations to all Award recipients!