The River Fergus, which is immediately adjacent to Scoil Chríst Rí in Ennis, presented a unique opportunity to develop outdoor physical activity programmes.

Unfortunately, in the past, this River had very negative connotations, including suicide. We wanted to help the local community see the River in a more positive light.

A pilot kayaking programme for 4th – 6th class from Scoil Chríst Rí confirmed a growing love for kayaking amongst the community and so the creation of urban outdoor adventure hub began!

Sports Hub

A kayaking club was established, Kayak Le Chéile. Members of the school, and community form part of the club committee. The club purchased kayaks, helmets, paddles and life jackets for the children in the school and members of the community to use. All equipment is stored in a shed on on the grounds of Scoil Chríst Rí.

The Burren Outdoor Education Centre provided kayak instructor training to individuals with a passion for kayaking from Scoil Chríst Rí, Clare Youth Services and Gaelscoil Mhíchíl Cíosóg in Ennis. Various kayaking programmes delivered through Kayak Le Chéile, helped cultivate a love of kayaking as physical activity within the community in Cloughleigh in Ennis.

Sports Hub

Over 70 children experience kayaking on the River Fergus through kayaking programmes.


With such enthusiasm within the school community, a kayaking course of Dads was developed. Kayak4Dads enabled 5 dads, none of which had never kayaked before, and 4 of which were members of the travelling community, kayak down the River Fergus.

On the final day, the Dads kayaked down the River Fergus to Scoil Chríst Rí. Their children greeted them and presented them with their certs. The Dads who completed this introductory course went on to receive their Level 1 award also, presented to them once again at the school by their cheering children.


A Kayak4Mums programme was also created which involved 7 mums taking to the water. They made history by kayaking from Ballyalla all the way to the school.  Once again the children, greeted their mums at the school and presented them with their certificates. The school and community have fallen in love with kayaking and fully support the newly established Kayak Le Chéile club.

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