Anois is a leadership training programme run in conjunction with secondary schools for students in transition/fifth year. It has been running in the diocese for over 20 years. It is a residential programme run in St. Patrick’s College in Thurles. The Anois programme offers young people the chance to develop their leadership skills as well as giving them the opportunity to build up their confidence and self esteem and make lasting friendship. Here are two accounts from students who attended the workshop.
Anois was a very valuable experience and is one of my fondest memories. I really enjoyed anois and I am very thankful that I managed to be selected to travel up to Laois with 7 other classmates. Father Chris and Aoife Walsh were very warm and welcoming and ensured we got the best out of the experience. On Day 1 we took the bus from rocks borough up to Castletown. I met up with my classmates and we stuck together like glue. We all sat near each other until the anois leader forced us to sit beside someone we didn't know. This was to get us mixing with the future friends we would make over the week. When we arrived we were given our rooms, met up in the lounge and said night prayer.
The next day was our first official day. We got up at 8:30 and went for a 15 minute walk to work up an appetite. We were served breakfast and immediately begun ice breakers, games and bonding activities. We received dinner at 1 o clock and went back into the activates which included games from the well known show The Cube and more ice breakers. We ate again at supper time and then prepared for night prayer. Once night prayer was over we returned to our room to spend some time meeting our new friends and playing games ( particularly cards ). The following days were very similar until the last night when we all gathered around and had a big sing song. This was probably the perfect way to summarise how we got on towards the end of the experience as we all came together and sang. On the last day, it was hard to imagine we were from different schools as most of us ended up sitting beside new friends we had made. I am very pleased with my Anois experience and would like to credit all the leaders involved.
From the 2nd- 6th of January myself and 6 other students from out ty class went to Laois to complete a leadership course called Anois. We left on the Monday from limerick at half3, as most people on the bus were nervous and did not know what to expect of the week, the leaders had us play games to get talking, when we arrived we got out rooms and them started with some activities. Every morning we would get up at 8:15 we would go for a walk and then have breakfast , throughout each day we did ice breaker games, we worked alone in our groups away from other schools on different projects and games, we had great fun. We had lunch from 1-2 and 6-7 and had small breaks in between then. We did anois idol where we mixed with other schools and preformed our own version of a song on Wednesday. On Thursday night we did Anois got talent in which we all preformed a talent either on our own or in a group. We went to bed each night at around 11 o clock. We had great fun throughout the whole week. On Friday we had mass and signed each others booklets, we said goodbye to the leaders as we got on the bus back to limerick , we sang songs on the way home and when we arrived in limerick and said our goodbyes to our new friends. One thing I really enjoyed about the week was meeting new people and also getting to know the people who went with me from my school better. It was an amazing experience.
The week that I went to Anois was the 2nd to the 6th of January. I went to Anois with 6 other people in my school. Ellen, Chloe, Katie, Grainne, Killian and Dylan was with me. We left Roxboro car park at 3:30 Monday evening. When we got to the retreat centre in Co. Laois we got our bags off the bus and when into the centre. That evening when we were all settled in and Aoife and Chris told us the rules we went to the breakaway rooms with our leaders.
In the break away rooms we did a few challenges. We surprised our leader by being able to do the challenges. Then when we were finished we went back into the chapel to see the scores, our school was the only one to get all the challenges done. The food was really tasty and we could go for seconds if we were still hungry. We did a lot of activities through the day that were really good and made all of us get to know each other. Every morning we went for a walk and then we had our great fast at around 9:00 we had lunch around 1:00 and then we had dinner around 5:00. The activities we played were ice breakers where we all got to know each other and the other was learning how to work well in a team. In one game we played it was one of the boys birthday and they surprised him with a cake. We had to get up every morning at 8:20 and we did not go to bed until 11:00 or 11:30.
Anois was such a great week for me as I learned how to be a good leader, what a good leader has to be like and I learned how to communicate and work in a group. I really enjoyed Anois. It was a great week and I am so glad that I did the interview, I am now very happy that I got chosen to go. I met a lot of new people and made new friends. Anois was definitely one of the best weeks of my life and if I had a choice I would love to go back and do it again. I would definitely recommend this program to anyone who would be interested or thinking of doing it.