seamus dubhghaill

Promoting Irish Culture and History from Little Rock, Arkansas, USA

Formation of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge

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comhdhail-naisiunta-na-gaeilgeComhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge, the central steering council for the Irish language community, is formed on October 26, 1943. Its mission is to “strengthen and consolidate goodwill and support for the Irish language and its usage as a living language so that it may be used freely and widely in all aspects of Irish life.”

The role of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge is to act as a coordinating body for voluntary Irish language organisations. The National Youth Council of Ireland and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions are similar umbrella organisations. The board of the nonprofit organisation is made up of representatives of its 24 member organisations. The secretaria of An Chomhdháil, ten employees, is responsible for the day-to-day running of the organisation.

The organisation sees its role as providing leadership to those involved in community and voluntary work on behalf of the Irish language, to provide analysis of Government policies with reference to the language, and the development and promotion of new policy measures. In practice this meant developing policies which are broadly acceptable to all member organisations and have their support, political lobbying in support of various issues and the undertaking of new and innovative projects.

The information website Gaelport.com is a project managed by staff of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge. The community-focused website contains information on Irish language news and events as well as Irish language classes and vacancies. It also contains information on advocacy work carried out by Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge and other Irish language organisations. The website wins best Irish language website at the 2010 Irish Web Awards.

The last meeting of the board of management of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge is on the evening of July 14, 2014, due to an abrupt end of funding from Foras na Gaeilge, the inter-governmental agency established to promote the Irish language throughout the island of Ireland. The management board of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge thus has no choice but to cease all activities with the loss of six full-time staff.

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