Happy Harbours

The Northern Ireland Fishery Harbour Authority (NIFHA) enters the 2nd year of its primary school education programme called ‘Happy Harbours’.

NIFHA is tasked with looking after the three fishery harbours in Northern Ireland namely Ardglass, Kilkeel and Portavogie. NIFHA is keen that children in the three fishing communities learn about their harbour and so be justifiably proud of the work of these busy fishing ports.

Kevin Quigley Chief Executive of NIFHA said “we have developed this programme to make it fun and exciting so that the children really enjoy taking part and we are very encouraged with the enthusiasm shown by the participating Primary Schools”.

In all, five schools are taking part :

  • St Mary’s Primary School, Dunsford;
  • St Nicholas’ Primary School, Ardglass;
  • Kilkeel Primary School;
  • St Colman’s Primary School, Kilkeel; and
  • Portavogie Primary School.
  • The programme involves four separate modules:

  • Know your local Harbour;
  • Health and Safety at the Harbour;
  • The local fishing industry;
  • Biodiversity and Environmental Responsibility.
  • There is a poster competition based around two themes:

  • Keeping safe at the Harbour - or -
  • Keeping your Harbour clean.
  • The programme also features specially designed games, such as “Ropes and Ladders” and “Go Fishing Ardglass, Kilkeel, Portavogie” to encourage learning through play, and a wide variety of classroom activities which range from a role play situation to on-line learning. The children taking part in the programme will have a guided visit to the harbour where they will have the opportunity, amongst other things, to interview the Harbour Master and to also explore NIFHA’s touch tank.

    Each child will receive a certificate recognising their hard work. Rosemary Scott the projects lead co-ordinator said “I have helped launch the programme in all five schools and I am really delighted with the reaction of the children, their positive response and enthusiasm is very encouraging. I have enjoyed working with everyone and the level of participation from the children has been excellent“