St Patrick’s Festival, Dublin 2020
St. Patrick's Festival
Name: Róisín Nestor
Course: Journalism (graduated November 2016)
Ambition: To appear on the Netflix series Nailed It, win the 10k and use it to go on a safari
HeadstARTS is Enactus Ireland’s longest running social project. Every week, people with physical and intellectual disabilities come together with student volunteers for classes of dance, drama and art. It has now branched out as its own society in DCU and there was also a HeadstARTS set up with Enactus NUIG.
On Clubs and Socs Day in First Year I came over to the Enactus stand for the free pizza and stayed to hear Ciara Egan telling me about the great volunteering opportunities with Enactus - in particular HeadstARTS. Starting out as First Year Rep (and later Vice-Chair and Chairperson), I threw myself into HeadstARTS and Enactus. Tuesday nights became the highlight of my time in DCU - dancing to ‘Ugly Heart’, bringing Santa to court, the HeadstARTS Oscars and painting Batman pictures.
Through Enactus we got to create social projects that helped Campill Centres and Care After Prison. During the RAG trip to Amsterdam in 2016, I got to volunteer with a nursing home, making cards and having the chats.
DCU is a hub for volunteering opportunities - there's something for everyone so definitely get involved!
I had done some volunteering in Transition Year with a daycare centre and I really enjoyed that so I thought college would be the perfect time to get fully involved.
After attending the first HeadstARTS class, I knew it would be the perfect fit for me. I really enjoyed the creative side of coming up with drama exercises and getting to teach art for the summer was fantastic. I loved being able to help people really let loose while acting and exploring their artistic side.
The volunteers and members are the greatest people and it's an honour to spend time with them.
It has to be the HeadstARTS Christmas Showcase. Everyone puts so much work into preparing the dance routines and plays in the weeks leading up to the showcase (of course there’s always plenty of hilarious improv on the day).
The volunteers always have the place decorated beautifully and our members artwork from the year so far is proudly displayed. The dance routines and plays are always filled with energy but the room really comes alive when Santa arrives.
The wonder and excitement that can be seen when our HeadstARTS members meet Santa and receive their personalised gift makes the Christmas Showcase my best memory.
One thing you’ve learned from giving back
I’ve learned that volunteering is like anything else in life - you get out of it what you put in. Whether you take on a leadership role, put extra effort into conversations with members and fellow volunteers, or find small ways to make a meaningful impact on people’s lives - you’ll get rewarded tenfold.
Somewhere you’ve always wanted visit
The Big Dog Café in Bangkok.
Random fact about you
I can cross my legs and walk along on my knees.
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