On 26th September, 5 Scottish Secondary Schools are travelling to Edinburgh, where they will meet up with scholars from 5 schools from Northern Ireland and 5 schools from Southern Ireland, where they will all take part in the flagship event – Ri Chèile – that commemorates the links between Ireland and Scotland.
It has been 9 years since the first Ri Chèile event which is a collaboration between Comunn na Gàidhlig and Gael Linn and since then Ri Chèile has been taking place alternately one year in Ireland and one year in Scotland.
The international debate – Fòram Cainte is the main event each year and the Scottish Schools taking part this year are Edinburgh’s James Gillespie’s High School, Nicolson Institute, Sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu, Dingwall Academy, Inverness Royal Academy and East Kilbride’s Calderglen Secondary School.
As well as taking part in the Fòram Cainte, the Irish scholars have the opportunity to learn some Gàidhlig and also visit Edinburgh Castle. They will listen to a Talk on the work and language of the Edinburgh community and there will be a visit around the City of Edinburgh where they will visit the National Gallery.
Also in the programme, there is a bilingual quiz and cultural evening, 3 very busy days, but a good opportunity to see and learn lots and without doubt strengthen links with our Celtic neighbours.
Bòrd na Gàidhlig's Head of Gaelic Usage, David Boag said: “One of the key aims of Colmcille is to encourage closer co-operation between Gaelic speaking communities in both Scotland and Ireland. Not only does Ri Chèile fulfil this aim, but it also supports Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s strategic priority of providing young people in Gaelic education with the opportunity to engage in activities which will enhance their Gaelic skills. It is great to see young people from across Scotland taking part and I am sure that Edinburgh will provide a fantastic backdrop for them to engage with Irish counterparts in what should be a busy, but enjoyable few days.”