3 February 2020
Secondary school students to make their way to Connemara for Ard-Fheis na nÓg
Secondary school students from all over the country will make their way to Ros Muc in Co. Galway on February 12th and 13th to take part in Ard-Fheis na nÓg, an event organised by Conradh na Gaeilge to give young people the opportunity to debate and give their perspective on a wide range of subjects.
Ard-Fheis na nÓg will start on Wednesday afternoon, 12th February, when schools from outside of Co. Galway will visit the Pearse Cultural Centre in Connemara, a place where they will have the opportunity to take a tour of the centre and visit Pearse’s cottage. Later that evening they will participate in a night of entertainment, an event organised by the local Language Planning Committee in collaboration with Coláiste na bPiarsach, Ros Muc and with Scoil Phobal Mhic Dara, Carna.
On Thursday, 13 February, the Ard-Fheis discussion sessions will be held, where schools from every corner of County Galway will also be present. A number of workshops for the students will be organised, focusing on areas such as technology (thanks to the support of Techspace), social media and language planning. Also, as part of the project Gluaiseacht (a project organised by Conradh na Gaeilge and funded by the Department of Culture, Heritage and Gaeltacht), students will be informed about employment opportunities available to them due to their proficiency in the Irish language.
In the afternoon the students will debate a number of motions focused on climate change, the future of Irish as the everyday spoken language of the Gaeltacht and the advantages of bilingualism.
Ard-Fheis na nÓg is being organised with support from the local development organisation, Forbairt Chonamara Láir, and the local Language Planning Committee. The occasion is also organised with financial support from Galway County Council.
Niall Comer, President of Conradh na Gaeilge says: “It is of the utmost importance to give the younger generation of the Gaeltacht, and other young people with Irish, the opportunity to discuss the questions that influence their generation amongst their peers. It is important to give them the opportunity to meet each other and get to know each other through Irish. This is a new project for Conradh na Gaeilge and we are very happy with the interest they have demonstrated with and with the large amount of students that will be present at Ard-Fheis na nÓg. These young people best understand the questions that are impacting this generation’s choice of language usage and it is necessary that they have a platform to have their voices heard. Conradh na Gaeilge will be paying close attention to what is said during Ard-Fheis na nÓg and we will be including young people’s opinions while developing our national policies at our organisations national Ard-Fheis in The Galway Bay Hotel from 21-22 February 2020.”
Peadar Mac Fhlannchadha, Advocacy Manager of Conradh na Gaeilge says: “We are really looking forward to the vibrancy and the motivation which will be displayed during Ard-Fheis na nÓg. As usual, we have received fantastic support from the Ros Muc community, from Forbairt Chonamara Láir and the local Language Planning Committee. We are extremely grateful to Galway County Council for their support and funding for this occasion and for TechSpace project and Seachtain na Gaeilge who are hugely supporting Ard-Fheis na nÓg. We are of course thankful for the continuous funding from Foras na Gaeilge and the Department of the Gaeltacht also.”