18 February 2020
“Significant challenges and opportunities for the Irish language and Gaeltacht communities in a period of transition north and south”
Conradh na Gaeilge's 2020 Ard-Fheis will be held in the Galway Bay Hotel this weekend, 21-22 February 2020, where the main issues surrounding the language for the coming year will be discussed and debated.
The Ard Fheis will begin at 8pm On Friday, 21 February with a discussion panel comprising a range of politicians who will speak on the themes of this Ard Fheis, namely, Education, Legislation and Elections'. Raidió na Gaeltachta broadcaster Máirín Ní Ghadhra will chair the debate on the night. This is an open event and all are welcome.
Events will take place all weekend and on Saturday morning the branches and members of Conradh na Gaeilge will focus their attention on the Ard-Fheis resolutions. This will include an opportunity for delegates to vote in Conradh na Gaeilge's program of work for the incoming year. Among the resolutions to be voted on will be the question of further investment for the Irish language and for the Gaeltacht, north and south, the commitments given by the parties regarding the language and the Gaeltacht during the general election, the full implementation and the development of new legislation in the north, the effective reform of the Official Languages Act in the south and the advancement of a new pre-school to University education strategy, among many others.
Dr Niall Comer, President, Conradh na Gaeilge, said:
“As we look at the new arrangements in the north, and the results of the election in the south, the language environment in which we work is changing. These changes present both opportunities and challenges. Conradh na Gaeilge is committed to making the most of these arrangements and working within the new political landscape we will have to create more support and opportunities for the Irish language community and the Gaeltacht. This Ard-Fheis is a great opportunity for the language community to guide the work of Conradh na Gaeilge and it is with this understanding that I warmly welcome the public to the Friday debate and a special invitation to the members and branches of Conradh na Gaeilge to discuss our resolutions together on Saturday. We must work together as a language community. ”
Julian de Spáinn, General Secretary of Conradh na Gaeilge said:
“This Ard Fheis gives us an opportunity each year to come together, create spaces and facilitate a democratic forum to discuss the most pressing issues facing the language community. The branches and members of the organization are the life blood of the Conradh. We also welcome this weekend the political representatives who will discuss language, rights and education issues and again our branches will be given the opportunity to participate in these discussions by asking questions to the panel. We are looking forward to launching Seachtain na Gaeilge with Energia nationally on Saturday and with other events aimed at students and families, as well as workshops, launches and much more. All in all, we look forward to a very successful weekend and to celebrate the work of the year at the Ard-Fheis dinner when special recognition will be given to the work of branches throughout the country during the year.”
Along with all these events Professor Emeritus Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh will be presented with the Gradam an Uachtaráin 2020 during the Ard-Fheis dinner on Saturday night. Prizes will also be awarded to branches around the provinces who have succeeded in achieving excellence in the promotion of the language during the year.