Twenty-two-year-old Orla Warnock from the Greencastle St Patrick’s club, Co. Tyrone, has been awarded the Translink Ulster GAA Young Volunteer of the Month award for September 2023.
The award is presented each month to one young volunteer whose efforts best demonstrate the volunteering ethos and community spirit of the GAA.
Orla was nominated in recognition of her outstanding work in promoting the Irish language in the Greencastle club and community, as well as the contribution she makes to the day-to-day running of the St Patrick’s club.
A passionate Gaelgeoir, Orla recently completed a degree in Irish studies and is now undertaking a PGCE so that she can share the language with others. As the club’s Irish Language Promotion Officer, she has organised many initiatives throughout the past year to promote Gaeilge, including a Summer Scheme for primary school children and helping raise funds for towards helping youth members attend the Gaeltacht in the summer months.
Orla also translates the club’s social media posts, event posters and tickets, and performs game announcements in Irish to enhance the use of the language within the club.
As well as being a player on the senior ladies’ team, she is also a steadfast volunteer at the senior men’s games, volunteering weekly to assist with serving refreshments, selling half-time draw tickets and operating the entrance gate.
Presenting Orla with her award, Sean Falls, Service Delivery Manager at Translink, said:
“It’s great to see young people like Orla so committed to working within their club and community and making positive impact. At Translink we pride ourselves in keeping everyone better connected across Northern Ireland so we’re pleased to be able to support young volunteers like Orla through this monthly recognition award and wish her well as she continues to help those around her.”
Ulster GAA President, Ciaran McLaughlin, added:
“Orla’s passion, enthusiasm and ability in promoting Gaeilge in her club is hugely impressive, and her remarkable initiative in establishing an Irish language summer scheme and inspiring others to learn and develop our native tongue displays a level of leadership beyond her years.
“I congratulate Orla and all the young nominees this month who are doing tremendous work in their local GAA clubs.”