Wednesday, 1 May 2019: Students from across Ireland were honoured for their efforts promoting water conservation and awareness at an award ceremony in Dublin today. Two schools, Ballaghkeene National School (Wexford) and St. Louis’ Secondary School (Dundalk) were named Ireland’s Water Schools of the Year for their hard work on the Green-Schools Water theme, which is sponsored by Irish Water.

This is the sixth year of the awards and partnership, which has seen over 1,000 schools attend interactive Water Workshops and Walk for Water Events since 2013.

Eamon Gallen, General Manager at Irish Water, said: ““Helping the next generation to understand that the importance of conserving water is a key part of our role in safeguarding Ireland’s water supply, so we are delighted to be partnering with An Taisce’s Green-Schools Water Theme for the sixth year running.

“We are always impressed by the creative and innovative ways that all of the schools come up with to save water and promote awareness both in their classrooms and in their communities.”

This year’s Primary Water School of the Year, Ballaghkeene NS, embraced the Water theme with actions such as installing water filters and butts; regulating tap pressure; replacing faulty taps; and adding basins to all sinks. Combined with awareness measures that included the wider community and multiple action days the school managed to reduce their already low water usage from 8.87l per person per day to 5.96l.

In Dundalk, St. Louis’ Secondary School – this year’s Secondary Water School of the Year – promoted their work on the Water theme far beyond their school gates. By appointing a PRO, using social media and writing for the weekly staff newsletter their committee succeeded in raising awareness about water scarcity and usage, including the importance of monitoring for leaks. This reflected in a reduction of per person water usage from 92l to 3.6l per day.

Green-Schools Manager Cathy Baxter spoke at the award ceremony: “This is one of our favourite events in the Green-Schools calendar. It’s fantastic to be in a position to acknowledge and reward the efforts of the students, teachers, principals, parents and caretakers who have committed so much of their time to conserving water and to see the fruits of our workshops and events throughout the year.”

At the ceremony, 13 students won prizes for their artwork designed for this year’s Green-Schools Irish Water Poster Competition and four groups of students were honoured for their work as Water Ambassadors in their schools and communities.

Winning schools and students:

Water Schools of the Year:


  • Southern Region: Ballaghkeene NS – Wexford (Overall national winner)
  • Eastern Midlands Region: St. Brigid’s NS (Cortown NS) – Kells, Co. Meath
  • Dublin Region: Hedgestown NS – Fingal County Council
  • Western Region: Latnamard NS – Monaghan


  • Southern Region: Coláiste Pobail Bheanntraí – Bantry Co. Cork
  • Eastern Midlands Region: St Louis’ Secondary School – Dundalk, Co. Louth (Overall national winner)
  • Dublin Region: Maryfield College, Grace Park, Dublin
  • Western Region: Loreto College, Cavan

Green-Schools Irish Water Poster Competition:

Junior Primary Category (Infants – 2nd Class)

  • Eastern Midlands: Aaron O’Néill, Gaelscoil na Mí
  • Dublin: Julia Millo, Scoil Mhuire Lakelands, Dublin
  • Southern: Eoghan O’Connell, Baltydaniel NS, Cork
  • Western: Lucy McDermott, Irishtown NS (Overall winner in age category)

Senior Primary Category (3rd – 6th Class)

  • Eastern Midlands: Niall Murray, Gaelscoil an Bhradáin Feasa, Meath
  • Dublin: Alex Burns, St. Attracta’s Senior National School
  • Southern: William Stokes, Baltydaniel National School (Overall winner in age category)
  • Western: Grace McDermott, Irishtown National School, Mayo
  • Raymond Eke, St. Mary’s Special School, Rochestown, Cork

Secondary Category

  • Eastern Midlands: Hanna Biju, Scoil Chríost Rí, Laois (Overall winner in age category)
  • Dublin: Anna Nic Cárthaigh, Coláiste Íosagáin, Dublin
  • Southern: Ewelina Podgórska, St. Aloysius College, Cork
  • Western: Joanne Daly, St. Michael’s Community College, Clare

Water Ambassador Programme Awards:

Regional Ambassador Awardees:

  • Southern Region: Coláiste Pobail Bheanntraí: Kaitlin Bilous, Eoghan O’ Mahony and Alannah Barry
  • Western Region/ Connaught/Ulster: St. Mary’s Secondary School, Ballina: Wah Ku Say, Wiktoria Salwa and Clara Laxton
  • Leinster: Loreto on the Green: Isabelle D’Arcy, Ruth Flynn, Aislinn McDaid

Ambassador Awardees Runners-up:

  • Presentation Community College, Terenure: Aoife Cullen, Isabelle Adgie, Katie McCaughey, Katie Burke and Lana Carpenter