PORTLAOISE girl Hazel Greene won the regional No Name Club Hostess of the Year award recently, which qualifies her for the national finals in Kilkenny next month.
The No Name Club is a nationwide youth organisation that was founded in 1978. The ethos of the organisation is to respects the dignity, value and uniqueness of all young people by supporting, advocating and helping to safeguard their right to enjoy life, feel respected and to mature without a reliance on alcohol and other drugs.
Hazel (15) is extremely well versed in social justice issues and has knowledge beyond her years when it comes to social equality and fairness in society, so it’s no surprise that she wishes to pursue a career in social justice law.
This was the first time for Portlaoise No Name Club to enter the competition and bubbly teen Hazel scooped the regional award following a one-to-one interview and a five-minute stage performance in Hollywood, Co Wicklow on Sunday 23 February.
Hazel will now compete with nine other regional winners from around the country in Kilkenny’s Lyrath Hotel on Saturday 13 April.
Regarding the qualification process, Hazel said: “I did a one-to-one interview but brought my CV with me and told my story through my CV. Then I did my live solo performance in front of the huge crowd. I am a student at Scoil Chriost Rí and was part of our school musical in the Dunamaise Arts Centre just before Christmas called High School Musical Junior. I performed one of the dances from the musical but incorporated my own moves, which seemed to have gone down well.
“I’m no stranger to being bullied myself. Having been in those awful shoes, I have a deep desire to help people who may be going through similar difficulties in their lives. I’m really big into social justice law; I just love it. I am currently seeking work experience and would love to get involved with a local legal company which practices social justice law to gain this.
“I can’t wait until the final next month and I hope that I can bring back the overall Hostess of the Year award trophy to my wonderful fellow members and to my county,” she said.
Portlaoise No Name Club is currently seeking adult volunteers who can give two hours a week. Garda vetting will be provided. For those who wish to apply, please contact the Portlaoise No Name Club Facebook page or phone chairperson Matt Kennelly on 089 4918293.