Team Ireland Olympian and PTSB ambassador, Sarah Lavin, visited her old primary school yesterday to inspire the next generation of children to pursue their athletic ambitions.

Lavin took a break from her intense training schedule ahead of this summer’s Olympic Games in Paris to encourage students to work hard and believe in themselves in order to reach their potential.

The appearance was part of a Dare to Believe Community event supported by PTSB.

Dare to Believe is the Olympic Federation of Ireland school’s programme that promotes Olympic values to young people, incorporating inspiring visits from Olympic athletes.

“Having the support of PTSB in hosting this visit to my old school in Lisnagry is a huge boost for myself and the community,” she said.

“The school has helped me achieve my dreams and I have no doubt that there are children here who will go on to achieve their dreams too.”

The school hall was packed out with students excited to meet Lavin and hear their hometown hero share her story about what it has taken for her to reach Olympic status.

She will be speaking at UL this morning giving the athlete perspective on staging major events as part of our Sport for Business / UL Sports Tourism event.

“PTSB supports the human behind the athlete and as proud partner of Team Ireland and the Dare to Believe programme, we’re absolutely delighted to support events like today where elite athletes and exceptional humans like Sarah inspire children from their local communities to get involved in sport and physical activity and reach their full potential,” said PTSB Head of Retail Distribution, Eddie Kearney.

Later in the evening, Lavin trained at the University of Limerick track where members of the Limerick Athletics Club, Dooneen Athletics Club and Emerald Athletics Club got to see her go through her paces as she gears up for the Olympics in Paris this summer.

Dare to Believe Programme Manager Roisin Jones said it meant a lot to see Sarah return to her roots. “Dare to Believe is all about inspiring the next generation and showing kids that they can dream big and achieve in life. Having a world-renowned athlete like Sarah visit her old school can provide a massive lift for the kids here today and get them thinking about their own sporting ambitions.”

This visit marked the launch of the ‘Road to Paris’ – an interactive schools challenge that is part of the Dare to Believe Olympic Schools Programme. With Paris 2024 being almost a ‘home Games’ and also being the 100-year anniversary of Team Ireland competing in the Olympics, this challenge is aimed at getting primary school children more active, whilst learning more about Irish participation at the Games ahead of the summer’s Olympic fever.

Rolling out from 15 April to 10 May, the Dare to Believe ‘Road to Paris’ is a free four-week challenge which encourages schools to get more active, whilst learning fun and engaging facts about the Olympics, French culture and Team Ireland.


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