We are delighted to have once again partnered up with a great team of people to present another fabulous event for young Irish speakers in our locality. Last weekend Glór Uachtar Tíre co-ordinated a now annual event called Aclaí Abú [Sports Forever].
The idea behind the weekend is to introduce children from the four Irish language primary schools in South Down; Bunscoil Bheanna Boirche, Castlewellan, Gaelscoil na mBeann, Kilkeel, Bunscoil Mhuire agus Pádraig, Downpatrick and Bunscoil an Iúir, Newry, to safe outdoor pursuits through the medium of Irish.
This year’s Aclaí Abú line-up included a 6 mile walk across the Mournes, yoga and kite making.
Thirty three children participated in this year’s Aclaí Abú and they were under the supervision of a fantastic team comprising the group leader Clár Ní Chuinneagáin assisted by Áine McClurg, Dulta Pickering and Emer O’Hagan. These four individuals made up the perfect team; Clár’s expertise in youth work and education was complimented by Dulta’s love of sport and the outdoors, Áine’s knowledge on yoga and primary education; and Emer’s background in art and crafts. This diverse combination of co-ordinators ensured all the children garnered a lot of information on the wilderness on our doorstep and how to respect the outdoors. The team was supported on Saturday’s walk by Mountain Leaders, Caoimhe Connor and Sarah Speers who far exceeded their roles as MLs, they guided the group safely on Saturday’s walk providing lots of interesting information en route and fun-filled encouragement for the children. The weekend was also supported by a number of parents also volunteered to help out and they greatly contributed to the Aclaí Abú experience.
The children themselves had a great weekend and had a unique opportunity to socialise with other Irish speakers outside the school context in a wholly fun environment. Throughout the weekend, the children developed new skills, made new friends for life and achieved personal goals by conquering what was both a challenging and exhilarating climb of Slieve Meelmore! Maith sibh uilig!
Glór Uachtar Tíre would like to thank everyone involved in Aclaí Abú 2022 for ensuring it was such a success including in particular the staff of all four Irish medium primary schools who promoted the event, to Shannagh-More Outdoors Centre who kindly rented hill walking boots for the weekend and to Foras na Gaeilge who provided a generous grant for this event.