Northern Ireland Culture Minister Carál Ní Chuilín has revealed that the target to have 10,000 ‘sign-ups’ to the Líofa campaign has been met. Launched more than three years ago, the Líofa campaign encourages people to become fluent in Irish. (Líofa means 'fluent'.)
The Minister made the announcement as she launched Seachtain na Gaeilge, the global Irish language and culture festival at Belfast’s Cultúrlann today. The festival runs until 17 March. She said: 'When I launched the Líofa campaign in September 2011, I could not have envisaged that we would quickly exceed the target of 1,000 people making the pledge to learn or improve their fluency in Irish.
'Since then, the numbers have grown and grown. This reflects not only the vibrancy of the Irish language community but also the numbers of people, of all ages, abilities and backgrounds, who want to learn Irish.
'Today, I am very pleased to announce that more than 10,000 people have signed up for Líofa.'
'The Irish language belongs to everyone. It is a threat to no-one. It is part of our shared culture and has a key role in our collective future. Each day, the number of Irish speakers is growing, and it is important their voices are heard.'