Offaly school surprised with €5,000 gift from Gala

A surprise assembly was held on Thursday

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly


Offaly school surprised with €5,000 prize in Gala competition

Offaly school surprised with €5,000 prize in Gala competition

As part if its 20th anniversary celebrations on Thursday, May 3, Gala Retail visited Shinrone National School in Birr to donate a huge €5,000 to the school as part of its Gala Gifts for Schools competition.

Shinrone National School was named as a ‘runner-up’ in the Gala Gifts for Schools competition, following the school submitting a 30 seconds video on how they would spend a ‘Gala Gift’ at the school to improve the education and school days of their pupils.

Hundreds of schools from across Ireland entered the competition, and a judging panel, comprising of actress, Aoibhín Garrihy; Editor of Primary Times, Marie O’Reilly; and Gala Retail’s CEO, Gary Desmond, deemed Shinrone National School to have one of the top videos on the day.

Actress Aoibhín Garrihy surprised the school by appearing at a special assembly in which she gifted the school, on behalf of Gala Retail, a huge €5,000 which the school pledged to spend on an eco-garden and improved outdoor facilities.

Fourth class teacher at Shinrone National School, Fiona Heffernan, explains: "When we first heard about the Gala Gifts for Schools competition, we were determined that our fourth class would be as creative as possible and create a video that visually showed our school and how a ‘Gala Gift’ could make a huge difference to improving our facilities at the school."

“To have been named as runner-up, receiving such a significant sum of money, is incredible! This will make a real difference to our school and will be of benefit to all of our pupils’ learning experiences. There’s such a buzz in Shinrone and we’d like to thank Gala Retail for this extremely generous donation to our school. We wish Gala Retail a very happy 20th anniversary.”

Gala Retail pledged to donate €20,000 to Primary Schools to mark its milestone 20th year and give back to the communities in
which its stores serve.

Aoibhín Garrihy was joined by Gala’s Marketing Manager, Tony Cluskey, and local Gala retailers at the prize presentation at Shinrone National School. Mr Cluskey adds: “The creativity and innovation shown in the videos that we received from
Primary Schools across Ireland was outstanding."

"It was extremely hard to judge the competition based on the calibre of entries, however the video from Shinrone National School really stood out thanks to its story, the clear message of how a Gala cash gift could really benefit the school, and of course, its pupils being the stars of the show in the video," he added.

“We look forward to following the progress of the school’s plans and are hoping to visit Shinrone National School later in the year to see how the €5,000 has been spent, and most importantly, how it’s benefitting the pupils’ education.”

2018 is a major milestone year for Gala Retail and throughout the year, the group will be giving back to its communities to thank customers for their loyal and ongoing custom. Follow Gala Retail on Facebook to keep up-to- date on forthcoming promotions and competitions.


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