Meánscoil Gharman flies Wexford flag at national ceremony

Gaelbhratach beag á bhronnadh ar Éire & Meg, Meánscoil Gharman, Loch Garman, ag Éadaoin Fitzmaurice, ar chlé, Réamonn Ó Ciaráin, Príomhfheidhmeannach Gael-Linn sa lár, agus Caitlín Ní Chonghaile, Feidhmeannach Foras na Gaeilge, ar dheis. Pic: Seán Ó Mainnín

Brendan KeaneEnniscorthy Guardian

STUDENTS from Meánscoil Gharman in County Wexford were among a group of over 200, from around the country, who were presented with Gaelbhratach flags at a prestigious ceremony in St Patrick’s campus of DCU.

The students, from Gaelbhratach committees in post-primary schools from across Ireland, gathered to celebrate their hard work in promoting Irish in their schools throughout the year. They were presented with a Gaelbhratach flag in recognition of their achievements.

Through workshops, craic and conversation, and brilliant music, the young gaeil got a taste of the Irish language community, along with motivation to ‘raise the Irish flag’ in their own lives.

Speaking about the event, Barry Ó Siochrú, the first Irish language officer in NUIG Students’ Union, said: “I am so proud to have been MC at this excellent occasion. I attended this event as a student myself and it is brilliant to see the young students now raising their Gaelbhratach just as I did.”

Mr Ó Siochrú said he was “filled with optimism” for the future of the students involved and for the future of the Irish language.

A panel discussiong also took place which was both informative and inspirational. Among those on the panel were: Éadaoin Fitzmaurice, founder of Fia Digital, podaster and social media guru; Chloe Ní Ruairc, Gníomhaí Gaeilge coordinator with Conradh na Gaeilge, and Eoin Ó Catháin, political correspondent for RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta.

They spoke about the different careers available through Irish, their role in the Irish language domain and the extra opportunities speaking Irish has provided to them.

The manager of Gaelbhratach, Mairéad

Mairéad Ní Thiománaigh,, the manager of Gaelbhratach, said: “This is always one of the highlights of the year. The presentation gives us the opportunity to meet and to celebrate students from all parts of the country. Every school has its own story but the common thread between these groups is their recognition of the importance of the Irish language, and their efforts to promote it.”

“How lucky are we to work with young people who energise us," said Ms Ní Thiománaigh.

“Our aim is to normalise spoken Irish in schools across the country,” she added, before expressing gratitude to funders, Foras na Gaeilge and the Department of Education.

She also acknowledged all of the “brilliant schools” for taking part and the DCU library in St Patrick’s Campus for hosting the event.