An insight into why water is an invaluable resource for Galway City

Renowned Galway journalist Bernie Ní Fhlatharta launched a unique new newspaper at the Galway Aquarium last week. ‘The Water News’, a special edition newspaper was compiled by the sixth class students of Holy Trinity National School, Mervue and the second class students of Merlin Woods National School, Doughiska.

The paper contains articles around the theme of water conservation, outlining why water is important for economic and population growth in Galway City as well as for everyday living and business.

Tips to conserve water

The students wrote and edited the articles following educational sessions at the school by Irish Water and Galway City Council water services staff. The newspaper gives an overview of what Galway City is about, there are poems and interesting facts about water, there are tips on how to easily conserve water in your home as well as the different ways that water is used in recreational activities around Galway.

Speaking at the launch Bernie Ní Fhlatharta said “We all take water for granted when we should be more conscientious about conserving it. That’s why it’s encouraging to see two Galway primary schools doing their bit by promoting water conservation through their newspaper.”

Arlene Finn, European Green Leaf Coordinator for Galway City, has circulated the newspaper to the European Commission where it will be enjoyed by thousands, if not millions, of students and adults across Europe.

Irish Water’s Regional Information Specialist Sean Corrigan commented “The children who worked on this newspaper are great ambassadors for Galway City. They realise the important role that water plays in the daily lives of their families. It is great to see children at such a young age taking responsibility for their own environment and their own community. As an adult we have a lot to learn from them. The children have taken action, and their eagerness to educate their own community is a credit to themselves, their families and their teachers.”

Why water is an essential resource

As well as compiling the newspaper the students of Merlin Woods starred in their very own short video about why water is important to them. This video can be viewed on the school’s website as well as on the Irish Water and Galway City Council websites and offers a very real account, through the eyes of Galway’s children, about why water is an essential resource.

Speaking about the newspaper launch, Lieze Fanning, Acting Senior Engineer, Galway City Council added “This newspaper launch is a wonderful finale to a month long of water themed events carried out by Irish Water and Galway City Council celebrating the European Green Leaf designation during which the pupils played a huge part. Galway City Council look forward to continuing the Slow The Flow water conservation initiative to make water conservation a way of life!”

Slow the Flow

Students from both schools also attended the launch of ‘Slow the Flow’ an e-booklet about water conservation which was launched by Mayor of Galway City, Cllr Pearse Flannery, in City Hall. The project formed part of a month of activities in Galway City celebrating the European Green Leaf designation which was bestowed on Galway for 2017. The events commenced with a clean-up of Grattan Beach, Salthill by the Irish Water regional staff and Galway City Council water services staff along with their children during the Hallowe’en break.

Staff of Galway Aquarium also brought the group on an exciting beach safari which unearthed some wild and wonderful discoveries. Tours were also organised to the Terryland Water Treatment Plant and the Mutton Island Wastewater Treatment Plant, two sites of strategic importance for Galway City and surrounding areas.

All of the activities which took place throughout November were organised in collaboration between Irish Water, Galway City Council, Galway Green Leaf, Galway Aquarium, Clean Coasts, and An Taisce.

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