Information Session – GME in Fife

Bòrd na Gàidhlig warmly invites parents and carers to an on-line meeting on Gaelic-medium Education. Come along and find out more about Gaelic-medium and how it can be set up in Fife.

Jim Whannel, Director of Gaelic Education, at Bòrd na Gàidhlig, will deliver a short presentation on the benefits of Gaelic-medium and answer any questions prospective parents may have.

Fife Council promotes the potential provision of Gaelic-medium Education in the area and will co-host the meeting along with representatives of Comann nam Pàrant, the national organisation which offers advice and support on Gaelic medium education to parents.

The meeting will take place on Teams, Thursday 08th December at 18.30.

You can register here: www.bit.ly/GMEFife

 

National Parks Commission – Stakeholder Consultation

Bòrd na Gàidhlig welcomes the opportunity to respond to this consultation by the National Parks Commission.

Some of the points raised include:

The growth in Gaelic learner numbers and in Gaelic-related tourism represents a tremendous opportunity for new and existing National Parks. Attracting people who use or are interested in Gaelic will produce a more diverse visitor profile – and increase visitor numbers with attendant economic benefits.

The use of the Gaelic language in settings such as National Parks contributes to individuals’ wellbeing.

Language and culture create self-esteem, nurture self-confidence, define identity and improve quality of life. This increases wellbeing for Gaelic users, learners, and supporters – who have great pride in the Gaelic language and culture. Gaelic contributes positively to what these people think and feel about their lives.

The full response can be accessed here.

Rising popularity of Gaelic sees Bòrd na Gàidhlig funding scheme for Language Development Officers oversubscribed by 220 per cent

Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s 2021-22 annual report has revealed popularity for Gaelic continues to grow after a new scheme to fund Gaelic Development Officers was oversubscribed by 220 per cent – resulting in the allocation of £500,000 of funding to 21 organisations.

The new scheme is designed to extend the number of Gaelic officers in the island and rural communities and in towns and cities.

Bòrd na Gàidhlig funds a range of organisations who employ development officers, and additional funding from Scottish Government allowed delivery of a new funding scheme open to third-sector organisations who want to develop their Gaelic provision.

The scheme was so popular that it received 30 applications, worth in excess of £800k, compared to an original budget of £250k.

In light of this demand, Bòrd na Gàidhlig agreed to allocate additional resources, double the initial budget, to the fund. As a result, 21 organisations are able to employ Gaelic officers, including Comann nam Pàrant Port Righ and Culture and Heritage and Arts Assembly of Argyll and Isles’.

Bòrd na Gàidhlig has also helped fund the introduction of the new SpeakGaelic platform, designed to support further learning of the language.

SpeakGaelic, funded and developed in partnership between Bòrd na Gàidhlig, MG ALBA, BBC and Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, was launched in October 2021 as a multi-faceted learning brand, offering the most comprehensive approach to learning Gaelic in a generation. SpeakGaelic offers users the option of face-to-face classes, self-guided online learning, and media content through a variety of platforms – or all three at the same time.

SpeakGaelic is just one of a number projects supported or established by Bòrd na Gàidhlig over the past 12 months, with the return of the #Cleachdiaigantaigh designed with many delivery partners to support those in Gaelic education.

In addition to £4.1m of funding distributed over the past year to 136 organisations, Bòrd na Gàidhlig has also worked closely with 67 public authorities on Gaelic language plans which support Gaelic in the workplace and public life, including five public authorities developing their first plans.

These Gaelic plans are the building blocks which aim to give the language prominence across the country, increase opportunities for using Gaelic and contribute to its normalisation.

Through work with public authorities and Gaelic language planning, Bòrd na Gàidhlig has also increased Gaelic medium resources in the bodies that protect and enhance the environment, such as NatureScot and Forestry Land Scotland.

According to the annual report, the Bòrd received a total Grant-in-Aid allocation of just over £5.6 million – the financial allocation Bòrd na Gàidhlig is required to operate within by Scottish Ministers.

Of that total, £1.7 million covered core running costs, while £2.4 million went to general Gaelic development funds – including community funding for people, projects and groups – and £1.4 million towards the Gaelic Language Plans Implementation Fund.

Mairi MacInnes, Chair, said Bòrd na Gàidhlig is keen to build upon the growing interest and demand for the language’s development.

She said: “Developing and supporting Gaelic – whilst dealing with the fall-out from the pandemic, its impact on individuals and families, communities, and public bodies – has remained our core purpose.

“World Gaelic Week demonstrated effectively the phenomenal increase in interest in using and learning Gaelic during lockdown. The number of learners through SpeakGaelic demonstrate the potential of what can be achieved.

“We continue to stress the importance of the message that Gaelic belongs to the whole of Scotland and we are also aware of the international interest in our language and culture.

“The increased demand for Gaelic across the country presents both an opportunity and a challenge – the language can grow and begin to stabilise but this requires significant additional resourcing.”

Chief executive Shona MacLennan highlighted that continued support for Gaelic speakers is be central to Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s work.

She said: “Support for Gaelic speakers – whether they have acquired Gaelic in their family, in GME, or are adult learners – is the purpose of BnG’s work. We fund a range of organisations who employ development officers to progress the work required and additional funding from SG enabled us to deliver a new funding scheme open to third-sector organisations who want to develop and embed their Gaelic provision. It is vital that we continue and grow, to maximise our impact across all corners of the country.”

Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s audited annual report has also been issued, with all quality indicators fully met and no recommendations made.

Mairi MacInnes said: “We welcome the findings of the new audit report, which confirms the significant progress we have made and will continue to ensure good goverance across the organisation. We will continue to follow guidance and best practice to ensure that we constantly evolving and progressing the organisation to wider benefit the development of Gaelic.”

The Annual Report can be read here.

 

 

Workshops: Working in Successful Partnerships

Bòrd na Gàidhlig will be running workshops throughout Scotland to support groups and officers working on Gaelic development projects and upcoming events.

 

Workshop themes:

• A chance to meet other officers/groups working in your area

• Best practice for partnership work

• Funding and seeking value for public money

• Sustainability going forward

 

The workshops will be delivered by Brian Ó hEadhra, Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s Funding and Partnerships Manager, and other Bòrd na Gàidhlig staff.

The sessions will be delivered in Gaelic with some English if required.

You can learn more about the session and register through Eventbrite.

If you have any questions about the workshops, you can contact us by emailing brian@gaidhlig.scot

Making a Difference in the Early Years with #DèanDiofar

Bòrd na Gàidhlig are delighted to announce a new campaign: #DèanDiofar Tràth-bhliadhnaichean (Make a difference in the Early Years), following on from the #DèanDiofar campaign launched last year aimed at encouraging people to consider a career in Gaelic education.

#DèanDiofar Tràth-bhliadhnaichean focuses on encouraging people to embark on a career in the Early Years sector. The campaign was developed with support from Practitioners based in various Local Authorities across Scotland.

Gaelic Early Years Education is a vital first step within Gaelic Medium Education and is a key priority area, highlighted within the National Gaelic Language Plan 2018 – 2023.

With 1140 hours of funded Early Learning & Childcare (ELC) now available to children aged 3 & 4, more Gaelic ELC Practitioners are required to ensure Gaelic Medium Education (GME) can continue to meet the demands of this expanding sector.

It is hoped by showcasing the breadth of opportunities offered by a career in Gaelic Early Years, that more people will be encouraged to come forward.

Jim Whannel, Director of Education Bòrd na Gàidhlig said, “Gaelic Early Years provision is vital to the development of Gaelic. The recruitment of skilled practitioners is of the utmost importance to enable this sector to fully keep up with the demand from parents. These new resources highlight the rewarding and varied career that awaits anyone considering working within Early Learning & Childcare.”

Flora Guidi, Ceannard, Bun-sgoil Ghàidhlig Phort Rìgh said, “A career in Early Years is a vital role and we value each and every person who will join us in this work.”

Bòrd na Gàidhlig are thankful to all the Early Years settings who allowed Practitioners to participate in this campaign, providing an invaluable insight into each of their careers.

Useful information:

#DèanDiofar Tràth-bhliadhnaichean

Bòrd na Gàidhlig provide vital funding to public authorities for 36 Gaelic projects

Bòrd na Gàidhlig has awarded over £413,000 to 36 Gaelic projects as part of the Gaelic Language Act Implementation Fund (GLAIF). 

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar is one of a number of Western Isles organisations to benefit from funding for a range of projects, including an award of £20,000 to provide Gaelic classes to its apprentices. 

The Comhairle also received £12,000 to provide an immersion in a Gaelic work environment for students undertaking a summer placement within a local organisation, and a further £8,000 to host Gaelic reminiscence sessions in care homes. Other funding included £7,500 to host LUACH 2023 – a festival of Gaelic events across Lewis and Harris. 

Among the many other organisations receiving funding are the University of the Highlands and Islands Outer Hebrides, who have been awarded £33,000 to offer Gaelic classes across the Western Isles. The National Library of Scotland has been awarded funds to hire an officer to digitise Cinema Sgìre films, while the University of Aberdeen has been provided funding to hire a Gaelic officer. 

The City of Edinburgh Council’s work in developing the Gaelic language has been recognised with an award of £20,000 to extended Capital Gaelic – a project aimed at building the links between Gaelic organisations throughout the city. 

Glasgow Life will carry its Gaelic Arts Strategy into a fifth year, where the organisation will promote a programme of events and campaigns following a £15,000 award, as well as provide training and development opportunities for Gaelic tutors. Glasgow City Council has also been provided with £7,000 of funding to develop an interactive Gaelic map of the city, as well as an additional £3,200 to provide Gaelic tuition to council staff. 

Elsewhere, Leisure and Culture Dundee will benefit from over £1,350, which will go towards delivering Gaelic concerts and presentations in Gaelic for Dundee residents, while Dumfries and Galloway Council has been awarded £5,750 for a Gaelic heritage value study. 

A full overview of projects that received funding can be found via the GrantNav website here 

Further projects that applied through GLAIF will also be supported as the year progresses. 

Mairi MacInnes, Chair at Bòrd na Gàidhlig, said: “The latest round of GLAIF funding shows the reach that Bòrd na Gàidhlig has as we strive to give the Gaelic language the platform to develop, not just in the Highlands and Islands, but throughout Scotland. 

“The breadth of awards across the country show the commitment from many councils and organisations to grow the language and bring it to an altogether new audience as well as supporting existing Gaelic communities. This form of funding plays a major role in ensuring that the language’s rich history is preserved and will be of benefit to people of all ages.” 

Bòrd na Gàidhlig runs funding schemes at different times through the year. If you have a proposal for a project please email: tabhartas@gaidhlig.scot, or phone 07584 103 944. 

 

Partner Quotes 

Leisure and Culture Dundee 

A spokesperson for Leisure and Culture Dundee said: “Leisure and Culture Dundee are grateful to Bòrd na Gàidhlig for continuing to support the Gaelic Lunchtime Concerts in the Marryat Hall, enabling us to bring the best young Gaelic singers and musicians to perform and for Gaelic to thrive through the joy of music.”   

 

Comharile nan Eilean Siar 

A spokesperson for Comhairle nan Eilean Siar said: “Comhairle nan Eilean is delighted to be awarded £8k from Bòrd na Gàidhlig to deliver a project attached to Taigh Shiphoirt and Bremner Court, the new care campus being constructed in Stornoway.  ‘Sùil air Ais, Sùil air adhart’ aims to deliver monthly reminiscence events for residents and will enable the purchase of items linked to the islands to stimulate memories and conversations.  Maintaining the spoken language is important  and Sùil air Adhart will support a member of younger staff group to champion and promote Gàidhlig with residents/tenants and among staff.” 

 

University of the Highlands and Islands 

During 2021-22 over 80 students enrolled on Gaelic courses delivered by UHI Outer Hebrides, and we are delighted, with the support of Bòrd na Gàidhlig, to be able to continue providing opportunities for Gaelic language learning in communities across the Western Isles.  We are pleased to be able to offer classes in 2022-23 in areas such as Barra, Benbecula, Tarbert and Barvas in addition to courses at our Stornoway campus and also online.   

Sue Macfarlane, Interim Principal of UHI Outer Hebrides, said: “UHI Outer Hebrides is committed to increasing Gaelic learning and usage opportunities and continued support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig and partnership working with Community Learning Hebrides enables us to offer a wide range of courses.  We are particularly pleased to be able to offer Gaelic courses free of charge to parents and guardians of children in Gaelic Medium Education.  We continue to work closely with Bòrd na Gàidhlig and partners in assisting with the implementation of the aims and objections of the National Gaelic Language Plan.” 

 

Glasgow City Council 

A spokesperson for Glasgow City Council said: “Glasgow Life’s Gaelic Arts strategy and programme has enjoyed unwavering support, through GLAIF, for which we, our community, Gaelic artists and audiences are extremely grateful. In 2022/23 we continue to develop Gaelic content at Glasgow Life’s major festivals, Aye Write, Merchant City Festival, Celtic Connections and the Mela aswell as working with an extensive range of partners to deliver: the Literary competition – Litir gu Glaschu(Gaelic Books Council); community drama workshops and Royal National Mod performances (Tricky Hat Theatre Company); 12 weeks of group work for young musicians (Sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu); devising a new model for Glaschu.net (Glasgow University) with a refreshed steering group; support organisations like Ceòl ‘s Craic and Fèis Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu in a post pandemic context; introduce a new exciting audience development project Trodhadaibh and continue with our flagship community of practice project GUIR!” 

 

National Library of Scotland 

Alistair Bell, Head of Moving Image Archive, National Library of Scotland said: “At the Moving Image Archive of the National Library of Scotland, we are delighted to receive a grant from Bòrd na Gàidhlig. The project is a partnership with Museum & Tasglann nan Eilean part of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. Together, we will use the funding to digitise and catalogue a unique collection of video tapes containing spoken Gàidhlig, and share the content with the public, both at community events in the Outer Hebrides and through the Moving Image Archive. The videos were filmed by local people during the 1970s and 80s in a community project, Cinema Sgìre. Our thanks to Bòrd na Gàidhlig for making this project possible.” 

 

Dumfries and Galloway Council 

Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee, Archie Dryburgh, enthused that the Council were delighted to receive funding from the Gaelic Language Act Implementation Fund to support a Gaelic Heritage Value Study within the region. Vice Chair, John Campbell, commented: “This exciting opportunity was identified through our Third Sector partner Gàidhlig Dumgal and we look forward to working with them very closely over the coming period to take this project forward.” 

 

University of Aberdeen 

A spokesperson: “The University of Aberdeen is delighted to be awarded £24,000 from Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s GLAIF fund. We are thrilled to gain the support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig to recruit a passionate and dedicated Gaelic Language Officer. We look forward to propelling our ambitious Gaelic Language Plan actions further and delivering even more exciting Gaelic language initiatives for the University of Aberdeen community.” 

 

Edinburgh City Council 

A spokesperson for The City of Edinburgh Council said: “We’re grateful for the continued support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig and delighted to be awarded £20,000 to further develop Capital Gaelic. This project aims to develop a co-ordinated and creative partnership approach to embedding Gaelic as a vibrant part of life in Edinburgh. This is being achieved by piloting interagency working with the Council and The National Library of Scotland convening a multi-agency group to identify opportunities, share knowledge and expertise and shape a vision for the future of Gaelic in the city.” 

 

Progress over the past six months has included: The development of a Capital Gaelic Facebook page; the setting up a Community Gaelic Interest Group involving staff from all network organisations involved (The City of Edinburgh Council, The National Library of Scotland, The National Galleries of Scotland, Comunn na Gàidhlig, SkillsDevelopment Scotland, National Museums Scotland); stronger links with schools using pupil views of what they would like Capital Gaelic to achieve: Ar Guth (Pupils Voice Group, Àrd Sgoil Sheumais Ghilleasbuig) and the development of Foundational Apprentice in collaboration with Skills Development Scotland.  

Funding Recipients 

University of the Highlands and Islands – Outer Hebrides 

University of the Highland and Islands 

The Highland Council 

City of Edinburgh Council 

University of Aberdeen 

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar 

Glasgow Life 

University of Glasgow 

West Dunbartonshire Council 

North Lanarkshire Council 

Newbattle Abbey College 

Glasgow City Council 

NadarAlba 

Dumfries and Galloway Council 

Angus Council 

Sabhal Mor Ostaig 

Moray Council 

COSLA 

Leisure and Culture Dundee 

Equality Evidence Strategy

The Scottish Government are consulting on a draft plan to improve and strengthen Scotland’s equality evidence base. The responses they receive through this consultation will help form the basis of Scotland’s new Equality Evidence Strategy.

Bòrd na Gàidhlig has submitted a response to this consultation which includes the following points.

We note that the groups with protected characteristics and the equality variables do not include Gaelic speakers. Thus, there is no consideration of whether Gaelic speakers are facing specific inequalities.

Gaelic speakers have faced discrimination historically and, to some extent, still do so today. There has in the past and there continue to be comments – both in social media and in mainstream print media in particular – in which hostility to the language and its speakers is expressed. Thus, prejudice towards the language and its speakers remains.

Given this, we see the Equality Evidence Strategy as providing an opportunity for greater standardisation/consistency of approach. Specifically, it should consider the case for Gaelic to be included in the assessment of equalities.

The full response can be read here.

Cross-Party Group on Gaelic AGM

The next meeting of the Cross-party Group on Gaelic will be on Tuesday, 2oth September at 6:30pm and will include the Groups AGM.

The meeting will take place both in-person, at the Scottish Parliament, and online, through Zoom. Translation will only be available through the online meeting, but people attending the meeting in person will still be able to connect to this through a personal device.

If you wish to attend the meeting in person, please register before midday on Friday, 16th September.

Bòrd na Gàidhlig (BnG) is the secretariat of The Cross-Party Group on Gaelic . The group meets at least twice a year, and is hosted by Chair Alasdair Allan (MSP).

Register here.

Agenda 20.09.2022.

Minutes from the previous meeting.

Annual Return can be found here

If you have any question, please email fios@gaidhlig.scot.

Communities Strategy for Scotland’s National Forest and Land – Draft for Consultation

Forestry and Land Scotland are seeking views on their draft Communities Strategy. Bòrd na Gàidhlig has submitted a response with included the following points:

“Fully empowering communities through encouraging greater community participation depends on effective communication with all types of communities – which must include communicating in Gaelic to Gaelic speaking communities.”

“Land Management Plans should incorporate the original Gaelic names of the areas which they relate to, thereby demonstrating the close link between land, language and people.  This will also increase the sense of participation for Gaelic speakers in the consultation process.”

You can access the full response here.

New Survey Looking at Young People’s Engagement with Gaelic Online

At the beginning of the year, Young Scot ran an online survey to learn more about the online spaces where young people aged 11-26 see and engage with Gaelic and about the Gaelic types of Gaelic content they’d like to see more of. The survey ran between December 2021 and April 2022, just as it did last year, which gave Young Scot the opportunity to compare the responses between the two and track any differences between them.

1,153 young people responded to the survey this year, an increase of 437 on the previous year. Of the young people who answered the survey, 61.1% said they cannot speak, read or write Gaelic, 32.8% said they are currently learning Gaelic, and 6% described themselves as being fluent Gaelic speakers. While the young people answered different questions depending on the level of fluency they described themselves as having, all respondents were asked the same two final questions;

  • How valuable is Scottish Gaelic?
  • How valuable is Scottish Gaelic culture and heritage?

When asked these questions, over two thirds (69.7%) of young people said that Gaelic is valuable or very valuable and nearly three quarters (72.2%) said that Gaelic culture and heritage is valuable or very valuable. Now, that’s some positive news!

Almost three quarters (74%) also said that they would like to see more Gaelic content online and on social media and Instagram (74.1%), TikTok (70.5%) and YouTube (64.6%) are the platforms they use most.

The survey report was published at the beginning of June and you can read that on Young Scot’s corporate website to learn more about the reasons young people gave for wanting to learn Gaelic, the types of online content they like and their feelings towards the Gaelic language.

Read the report here.