RAG Society to remain prominent despite re-branding

Following the recent announcement that there will be no official RAG Week this year, DCU’s Raise and Give Society has spoken out to assure students that they will still be active in many other events throughout the semester.

Speaking to The College View, the society’s Public Relations Officer Hannah Dobson explained how important it is to invest time and energy to help bring the RAG brand back to its traditional roots.

“Unfortunately in recent times the brand has become slightly more associated with drinking culture. Through our work with RAG and the RAG societies around the country we are showing that this isn’t how it has to be.”

In the pipeline for the coming weeks is The Business & Enterprise Ball Pre-Pamp on March 13th, where hair and make-up professionals will be on hand to prep and pamper the girls before the big night. Later in the month, budding beauty queens are invited to enter the Lovely Ladies competition, taking place on March 24th.

Dobson went on to say: “RAG as a brand has a long and successful tradition of engaging students with contributing positively to society right around the world.

“I think everyone recognises that there is something about the RAG brand which gets students interested.”

She explained that it can often be difficult to get students engaged and involved in making a difference, but that it’s important to try and “create a culture of social action and do good on our campus.”

In University College Cork (UCC), a zero-tolerance policy on anti-social behaviour was in full force throughout its recent RAG Week. Welfare Officer of UCC Student’s Union, David Berry said the college’s attempt at limiting alcohol related harm this week has “gone very well”.

“We’ve focused on rebranding the week from RAG to R&G; Raising and Giving,” said Berry.

“We’re removing all the connotations of partying and drinking associated with the week and bringing it back to its original focus on fundraising.”

Another measure put in place for UCC’s R&G Week was the provision of screening and brief intervention therapy for UCC staff to help in identifying students that were at a high risk of alcohol-related harm. Bodies such as UCC’s Student Health Department, the Gardaí, the local residents’ association, the Student Health Department and the student counselling body worked alongside the SU to ensure the week ran smoothly.

This year UCC raised funds for the COPE Foundation, Cork University Hospital Charity and Breakthrough Cancer Research.

Ruth Marnell and Martina Brophy

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