On Tuesday, the 20th of October, 6 transition year students along with Miss O’Regan, and fellow supporters, headed off to Cork for the Positive Mental Health public speaking competition. There were 2 teams organised, both including three people. Team 1 consisted of Sicilia Smith, Hillary Paulino and Nola Debuisson. Team 2 included Kate Burke, Orlaith Connolly and Zoe Coakley.
At 8:50am, the mini bus departed school grounds and headed off to Silver Springs Hotel, where the competition would be held. Arriving at the hotel in good time, supporters were divided into two separate groups for Team 1 and for Team 2. Soon, Team 1 was ushered into the Leinster Room and Team 2 was led into the Munster Room.
All schools were present and ready to begin apart from one which was Coláiste na Toirbhirte, who were still missing at that point. However, St Mary’s from Mallow, Coláiste Choilm and of course Sacred Heart students were sitting down and ready to commence. After a few calls made and half an hour gone by, the judges announced that the competition would simply have to begin without Coláiste na Toirbhirte. Team 1 was the first team to speak in the Munster Room. The 3 girls, Sicilia, Hillary and Nola did a brilliant job of reading out their speeches with clarity and conviction. Team 2 in the Leinster Room, which included Kate, Orlaith and Zoe were second in speaking, and also did a fantastic job of reading out their speeches with passion and distinct clear voices. Miss O’Regan made sure to support both teams by being there for Team 1, then leaving briefly to watch Team 2 as well. The supporters as well did a great job by giving the girls encouraging smiles and great applause when the girls were finished speaking.
After all three teams had spoken, with all hope gone of Coláiste na Toirbhirte ever showing up, the decision was up to the judges. They briefly left both the Munster and the Leinster Rooms and went into a private room to discuss their decisions about the winning team. Tensions were high as all the teams waited in apprehension and excitement for the results. Soon the judges were back in the rooms and seats were taken again. After a brief speech from the judges, the results were announced. Team 1 from Sacred Heart unfortunately lost to St Mary’s from Mallow in the Munster Room. However, Team 2 from Sacred Heart in the Leinster Room were victorious as they were announced to be the chosen winners to go through to the next round. All 6 girls from both teams wrote terrific speeches and delivered them with confidence and clarity. Despite the loss in the Munster Room, Sacred Heart as a whole, can still hold their heads high and be proud of the dedication and effort that the two teams made.