1 March 2019

The Olympic Federation of Ireland has launched “Dare to Believe”, a school activation programme championed and supported by the Athletes’ Commission. Olympism, Paralympism and the benefits of sport will be promoted in schools nationwide by some of Ireland’s best known and most accomplished athletes in a fun and interactive manner.

The aim of the programme is to promote the wider values of sport to children – teachers and students will receive resource packs with a range of activities and information based on five rings – Olympism and Paralympism, Healthy Mind and Body, Joy of Effort and Courage, and Respect, Responsibility and Equality. The final ring is titled ‘Striving for Excellence’ and involves a high-performance athlete or Olympian/Paralympian telling the class about their journey in sport.

Among others, the “Dare to Believe” Team features also Irish Olympic rower Claire Lambe, who retired from her sport last year at the age of 27, following a memorable career at the highest level. She and Sinead Lynch came sixth at the Rio Games, making history by becoming the first Irish women’s crew to make an Olympics final.

“Schools can sign up online and they’ll be sent a full pack to the teacher to run through the five rings,” Lambe said. “They’ll talk about the different Olympic values, healthy eating, being active. Also, during the programme, they’ll bring out an Olympian or an aspiring Olympian to talk about their sport.”

The dual purpose of the programme is to help athletes to develop their presentation skills and profiles, while providing a small additional revenue stream. For the Olympic Federation of Ireland, it is it is important to have a meaningful impact on children, and how sport can benefit them across a variety of realms.