Mallaig winner visits European Parliament
LOCHABER Rotary Club’s essay competition winner Jasmine Humphrey has visited the European Parliament as part of her prize.
The Mallaig High School pupil was one of 24 Scottish students to benefit from a Rotary-funded trip to Strasbourg earlier this year, after impressing the club with her account of the issues involved in maintaining and supporting peripheral languages including Catalan and Gaelic.
Jasmine was this month’s speaker at the club’s lunch, giving a ‘highly informative, entertaining and at times emotional presentation’.
To go on the trip candidates must have gained Higher French or another language at advanced level and they are encouraged to participate and communicate in their second language during the event.
The pupils enjoyed exploring Strasbourg learning about its history, architecture and language.
They carried out a street survey asking locals what they thought about Scotland’s position in Europe, participated in a fun quiz in different languages and met pupils from the other nations.
Jasmine said she was particularly intrigued by the fact visiting Germany involved simply walking over a bridge.
On the second day they were greeted by Scottish MEP Catherine Stihler and sat in on a session of the Euro Parliament.
The pupils followed the de- bates with translations through headphones.
Jasmine expressed her thanks to the Rotary club and said the experience taught her the true meaning of solidarity.
She said: ‘It was an absolutely amazing opportunity to see at first hand the work of the European parliament. We made many friends and it made us think of Europe as a whole – all working together – good communication between us is really vital.’
Jasmine finished her talk with a quote from former European Commissioner Maria Damanaki: ‘If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’
On behalf of the club, past president George Bruce thanked Jasmine for her fascinating talk.
Sally Auty, teacher at Mallaig High School, Paula Ross, president of Lochaber Rotary Club, Jasmine Humphrey and Rotarian George Bruce.