28th September 2010
A group of teenage Gaels will be gathered together on 30th September in the Àros Centre, Portree, to take part in the annual international public speaking / forum cainte competition, ‘Ri Chèile’ whose reputation continues to grow each year. The event is organised by Comunn na Gàidhlig (CnaG) in Scotland and Gael Linn in Ireland.
Pupils from Tain, East Kilbride, Cumbernauld, Glasgow, Inverness, Dingwall, Stornoway and Portree itself are joined by pupils from different areas of Ireland. Over and above the formal proceedings, there is a ‘Journey through Time’ in the midst of The Trotternish Ridge with Dugald Ross of Staffin Museum. Skye’s fascinating geology will be explored in Gaelic with the backdrop of a vibrant crofting community. Young participants will stand in dinosaurs’ footprints, and learn about human life on Skye 8,000 years ago.
A cèilidh with Ann Martin and young local musicians takes place at Kilmuir Village Hall on the final evening.
According to Alasdair MacKinnon, Co-ordinator of Colmcille,
“Ri Chèile provides a lively Gaelic-speaking meeting place for young people from Scotland and from Northern and Southern Ireland, to meet and debate in a lively and enjoyable environment. It involves hard work but is also an enjoyable experience for the young people and teaching staff. It is an important project for Colmcille and we are delighted to be associated with it. We congratulate CnaG and Gael Linn and all those involved in its continuing success”.
Sìne Gillespie works for Lasair [the language initiative of north-east Skye]. She said,
“We are delighted that Ri Chèile is taking place in north Skye this year. Our students on both sides of Sruth na Maoile have been busy preparing their topics ahead of the event. The challenge of delivering a presentation boosts confidence, and it is a joy for the audience to hear our young people airing a variety of views in Gaelic and Irish. Ri Chèile creates an opportunity for young Gaels to meet with one another and Skye’s Trotternish peninsula offers a brand new experience for many. The group is warmly welcomed by our communities. Our hope is that we will learn from one another, and that each one will go home feeling inspired and enriched by the experience.”
Topics covered this year will include, ‘Power of the media’, ‘Child Trust Fund’ and ‘Against testing of make up on animals’.