Cultúr Club is a collective title for a variety of exciting and innovative initiatives being developed by Conradh na Gaeilge to help foster a stronger sense of Irish identity, especially among the Irish abroad. These initiatives aim to assist local communities in everything from running language rights campaigns and youth workshops to organising cultural events for all age-groups through Irish.
Fostering A Sense of Community
The primary purpose of Cultúr Club is to foster a sense of community among the various groups promoting the Irish language and culture around the world. In cultivating an international network of Irish-speakers and cultural ambassadors, we want to connect likeminded individuals who are working to promote Irish in Ireland and overseas.
This way, great ideas can be shared, new initiatives can be developed, and Irish-speakers everywhere can be inspired as active members of the wider global Irish-speaking community.
Stage 3: Cultúr Club Curriculum
Thanks to funding from the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade (DFAT) and the Department of Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht (DCHG), Conradh na Gaeilge is currently developing the next phase of the project. This includes:
- Developing Cultúr Club as a series of Irish-language and culture workshops, and designing a general activities-based curriculum for the children of Irish parents and those with strong Irish connections/the affinity diaspora:
- Aimed at diaspora children of Irish parents (6 – 16 years), focused on fun and social interaction
- Language and culture learning objectives also included with each session / workshop
- Adaptable to suit the expertise of key members of the Irish community in each respective locality
- Potential to include guest facilitators from Ireland for special occasions
- Elements of both traditional Irish culture, and of new Irish innovations and industries
- Linking the Irish diaspora with Irish cultural institutions in Ireland
- Developing an outreach roadshow focusing on key elements of Irish language and culture:
- Aimed at non-Irish children aged 6 – 16 years old
- Primary and secondary level
- Potential to adapt for third level focusing on further educational institutions in Ireland
- Linking the non-Irish community abroad with educational institutions in Ireland
- Facilitating 15+ roadshow workshops in local and international schools in three pilot locations, subject to local interest from specific Irish missions and groups
- Providing ideas, resources, and practical support for missions and community groups organising Irish-language events as part of international celebrations:
- Trasna na dTonnta from 22 - 26 January 2018
- Dúshlán 125 from 6 - 8 February 2018
- Seachtain na Gaeilge le Energia from 1 – 17 March 2018
- St. Patrick’s Day on 17 March 2018
- Comhrá '18 from 8 - 15 October 2018
- Bliain na Gaeilge throughout 2018
Background: Stage 1
Cultúr Club was piloted by Conradh na Gaeilge in partnership with the Consulate General of Ireland for Hong Kong & Macau in the summer of 2016. The Consulate had identified the demand for Irish-language and culture classes for the children of Irish parents and those with strong Irish connections as a way to strengthen the sense of Irish identity within the community.
In April 2016, the Consulate contacted Conradh na Gaeilge for advice on the matter; representatives developed a proposal to this end in May 2016 and travelled to Hong Kong in June 2016 to meet key members of the Irish community and other interested parties in an effort to assess the interests, abilities, and requirements of potential students and their parents.
Having drafted a programme outline and developed a sample lesson plan with sample activities, the Consulate also arranged for Conradh na Gaeilge to run interactive language and culture awareness workshops with over 140 students in local and international schools in Hong Kong and Macau, to gauge and inspire interest in Ireland and the classes.
The interest from both Irish and Asian parents, children, and educators was phenomenal, and the Cultúr Club project was born.
Stage 2: Workshops in America
Conradh na Gaeilge then developed the next stage of Cultúr Club in the United States in association with the Fulbright Commission of Ireland and the then Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural & Gaeltacht Affairs (DAHRRGA).
We facilitated a series of eight community-building workshops with Irish-language and culture groups in different locations across America between 29 November – 11 December 2016. We wanted to focus on supporting grassroots Irish-language and culture groups in Ireland and abroad with practical advice and resources including a series of community workshops, and a support handbook.
Stage 2.1: Support Handbook
The support handbook includes some advice that might help you and the community group in which you’re involved with the work that you are doing, or inspire you to try doing something new in Irish.
Cultúr Club also affords us the opportunity to engage directly with you about what matters locally, and how Conradh na Gaeilge might be able to help you with that. You can tell us about your group’s priorities, campaigns, successes and failures, as well as share local expertise on language promotion in a global context.
Contact & Orders
Síne Nic an Ailí
Cultúr Club Project Director, Conradh na Gaeilge
6 Sráid Fhearchair, Baile Átha Cliath 2, Éire | Ireland
And finally...who is Conradh na Gaeilge?