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Ag tacú le ‘nuachainteoirí’

(Joint post with John Walsh)

John Walsh and I are organizing a stakeholder event on Friday 14th October in Dublin. The meeting aims to provide an opportunity for discussion to groups that are promoting Irish outside the Gaeltacht and who have an interest in the structures that were created under the Gaeltacht Act and that are pertinent to new speakers. To that end we have invited representations of Irish Language Networks and groups interested in applying for status as Gaeltacht Service Towns to meet and identify and discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with this initiative.

Representatives of Foras na Gaeilge and Údarás na Gaeltachta will be present to explain the background to the Networks/Gaeltacht Service Towns and to share experience of language planning in the Gaeltacht. Representatives of Glór na nGael and An Droichead in Belfast will also address the meeting and Prof. Colin Williams of Cardiff University will discuss the Welsh experience.

Nuachainteoir15 0428The 20 Year Strategy for the Irish Language 2010-2030 recognised the importance of supporting Irish speaking communities outside the Gaeltacht. In the Gaeltacht Act 2012, which was enacted as a result of the Strategy, a mechanism for granting statutory recognition to such communities was created for the first time. In article 11 of the Act, it is provided that the Minister may designate a specific community outside the Gaeltacht to be an ‘Irish Language Network’ and that the given community may put together a language plan with the assistance of Foras na Gaeilge.

In 2015 five such Networks were designated: Clondalkin (Dublin); Loughrea (Co. Galway); Ennis (Co. Clare); West Belfast and Carntogher (Co. Derry). In addition to the networks the Act provides (article 9) for Gaeltacht Service Towns, towns either within or adjacent to the Gaeltacht that are important in terms of public and general services. As they are predominantly outside the Gaeltacht the Networks and the Gaeltacht Service Towns are of particular importance for new speakers of Irish.

research report pictureTá sé mar aidhm ag an gcruinniú seo deis plé a thabhairt do ghrúpaí atá ag cur na Gaeilge chun cinn lasmuigh den Ghaeltacht agus a bhfuil suim acu sna struchtúir a bunaíodh faoi Acht na Gaeltachta agus a mbaineann tábhacht leo ó thaobh nuachainteoirí. Chuige sin tá cuireadh á thabhairt againn do Líonraí Gaeilge a ainmníodh cheana agus do ghrúpaí eile ar spéis leo cur isteach ar stádas mar Bhaile Seirbhíse Gaeltachta teacht le chéile chun na dúshláin agus na deiseanna a bhaineann leis an tionscnamh sin a aithint. Beidh ionadaithe ó Fhoras na Gaeilge agus Údarás na Gaeltachta i láthair chun cúlra na Líonraí/na mBailte Seirbhíse a phlé agus taithí na pleanála teanga sa Ghaeltacht a roinnt. Labhróidh ionadaithe ó Ghlór na nGael agus ón Droichead i mBéal Feirste leis an gcruinniú chomh maith agus déanfaidh an tOll. Colin Williams ó Ollscoil Cardiff cur i láthair faoi thaithí na Breataine Bige.

Aithníodh sa Straitéis 20 Bliain don Ghaeilge 2010-2030 go raibh sé tábhachtach tacú le pobail Ghaeilge lasmuigh den Ghaeltacht. In Acht na Gaeltachta 2012, a achtaíodh mar thoradh ar an Straitéis, cruthaítear bealach chun stádas reachtúil a thabhairt do phobail dá leithéid den chéad uair. In alt 11 den Acht sin, foráiltear gur féidir leis an Aire ‘Líonra Gaeilge’ a ainmniú lasmuigh den Ghaeltacht agus go bhféadfadh pobal an cheantair sin plean teanga a chur le chéile le tacaíocht ó Fhoras na Gaeilge. In 2015 ainmníodh cúig Líonra Gaeilge: Cluain Dolcáin (Baile Átha Cliath); Baile Locha Riach (Co. na Gaillimhe); Inis (Contae an Chláir); Iarthar Bhéal Feirste agus Carn Tóchair (Co. Dhoire). Chomh maith leis na Líonraí déantar forálacha san Acht (alt 9) faoi Bhailte Seirbhíse Gaeltachta, bailte in aice na Gaeltachta nó laistigh di a mbaineann tábhacht leo ó thaobh seirbhísí poiblí agus eile. Toisc gur lasmuigh den Ghaeltacht atá siad den chuid is mó, baineann tábhacht ar leith leis na Líonraí agus na Bailte Seirbhíse ó thaobh nuachainteoirí na Gaeilge.

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