Meitheal is a leadership programme which operates in 19 secondary schools in the Kildare and Leighlin diocese. The name Meitheal was taken from an old tradition in the West. Farmers living in the same area would have a Meitheal every year, the whole idea being that they would work together to bring in their crops. This built up strong friendships and respect among the people involved in the Meitheal.
Our Meitheal programme is designed to educate and empower young people in their schools. The students, leaders and others educate each other through leadership, taking action, liturgy, reflection and evaluation. All students who participate on the programme have to attend a week’s training course. This course will give the students all the skills they will need to work as a Meitheal team in their school.
There are many people involved with the programme in different ways such as parents, teachers, students and volunteers who work as leaders each year. The Meitheal programme is the start of a process, the development of young people. It is envisaged that students involved in the programme would later become leaders in their own parish and community. Meitheal is very much about transformation, it’s about trying to make a difference, to make your school a better place for all.
Act justly, love tenderly and walk humbly with your God.
Ms. Tina Cushen is the Meitheal Co-ordinator and Support Teacher in Mountrath Community School.