Holly Maguire, centre, with her teacher David Morgan, left, and Director of the National Disability Authority, Dr Aideen Hartney.

Young artist Holly honoured at final of national competition

Holly Maguire from St Mary’s National School in Rathowen travelled to Dublin City Hall recently for the national final of the Someone Like Me art competition.

Fifth class pupil Holly was presented with her Senior Category County Winner’s plaque for her entry in the annual competition, which is supported by the National Disability Authority.

The recent presentation was made at the first in-person national final to take place for two years which saw representatives from 50 primary schools across the country gather at Dublin City Hall. The fully accessible event was also livestreamed on the Someone Like Me website so classmates, family members and friends could join in remotely.

The competition attracted over 2,700 entries from primary school pupils and their teachers right across Ireland – almost 1,000 more than last year- bringing the total number of children who have taken part over the last seven years to almost 15,000.

The prestigious competition which is now in its seventh year is a national celebration of the things that unite children of all abilities, helping to nurture more positive attitudes towards persons with disabilities.

Holly's winning entry.

Minister of State with special responsibility for disability, Anne Rabbitte TD said that the number of entries this year is a tribute to the commitment not just of the National Disability Authority, but also to Ireland’s primary school teachers, who continue to play an important part helping to create a more inclusive Ireland.

“I am hugely encouraged by the growing interest in the Someone Like Me art competition. It shows a real commitment on the part of teachers and pupils to helping to develop a shared understanding of how we should treat others in a caring, sensitive and inclusive way, promoting a sense of belonging and connectedness.” she said.

“The standard of entries has been extremely high this year, presenting the judging panel with a real challenge as they worked their way through each and every submission."