Secondary school students in Derry have been challenged to give up social media for a day to help those less fortunate.
Local youths have been urged to take part in Trócaire’s ‘Sign Up Sign Out Challenge’.
Kevin Donnelly from Trócaire said: “Many of us associate Lent with giving something up so as part of this year’s Lenten campaign we are asking post-primary students to give up something for Lent that may prove easy for some but incredibly difficult for others – social media.”
“The ‘Sign Up Sign Out Challenge’ takes place on Wednesday March 7, although the challenge can be done any time during Lent, and we are hoping that school students, who are old enough to have social media accounts, will stay away from them for one day only.
“During the time they are offline we are hoping they will seek sponsorship or organise fundraising events to raise money for Trócaire.
“It’s a light-hearted way of getting across a very serious message. The break away from the ever-present Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram will hopefully give students the opportunity to reflect on life outside the digital world.
“In the real world children just like them in the developing world face huge challenges,” said Kevin.
Kumba, the little girl on this year’s Trócaire Box, is only seven years old but has already survived an Ebola outbreak that killed 4,000 in Sierra Leone ,and a landslide that killed 1,000 of her neighbours, and has missed school as a result.
Kevin said, “All over the developing world there are millions of children who are unable to attend school because their parents need them to help search for food, or they can’t afford books and fees or they have had to flee their homes because of conflict.
“It’s children like this that Trócaire will help in the coming year through support for the Lenten campaign. We receive incredible support for the campaign from schools right across Co. Derry and we have no doubt that students will do their bit once again for the children in dire need overseas.”
To find out more about the challenge or to sign up visit www.trocaire.org/signupsignout