By Eimear Rabbitt, DIT
Campus.ie Intern


The University of Limerick held its annual Raising and Giving week with a significant name change in place in order to ensure that the true meaning of the week was not lost on students.

Instead of the usual 'Raising and Giving Week', which is celebrated by the majority of third level institutes across the country, the Limerick University felt that the new and improved name, 'Charity week' would help students to reconnect with the true meaning of the week.

The decision was made after a survey compiled by the Students Union, revealed that 35% of the current first years did not know what the "RAG" abbreviation stood for.

The main aim of the change was to make students more aware of the charitable aspects of the week and thus less inclined to engage in anti-social behaviour, which has been responsible for marring past RAG Week's.

Last year, 20 University of Limerick students were arrested, causing the Students Union, Gardaí, the Limerick County Council and the Local residents association to come together and make the united decision to re-brand the week. In one incident, a car was upturned in the front garden of a house near the University.

Further improvement was made to this year's schedule with the implementation of four challenge days into the Charity Week, one day for each of the selected charities. This year's charities were as follows; the Limerick Youth Service, Mid-West Simon Community, Make a Wish Foundation and Irish Heart Foundation.

"There was definitely a greater emphasis on raising money this year after the damage that was done last year", UL student Fionnuala Ní Fhlaitherata told Campus.ie. "It was much quieter and there were a lot more Gardaí around the place but we still had great crack. The main events like the Corona's on Wednesday night still packed the crowds in. Sharon Shannon was also brilliant on Thursday night and she had Shane McGowan with her but he only sang a couple of songs", said Fionnula.

The weeklong event came to a close on Thursday night last with a rousing performance from Sharon Shannon and her big band along with very special guest Shane McGowan. The week also saw performances from the Coronas and the Chapters and daytime events included The Great Race, Tag Rugby and 5-a-side soccer tournament.