Organisers of Seachtain na Gaeilge have lined up some big names for this year’s events. Monday will see a Balloon Launch with sports commentator Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh, as well as Speed Dating with former Rose of Tralee and RTÉ host Aoibhinn Ní Shúilleabháin.
As part of Seachtain na Gaeilge’s ‘No Béarla’ campaign, fluent Irish speakers will be encouraged to speak exclusively through Irish for the entire week, while Thursday 11th will be the designated ‘No Béarla’ day for everyone else.
Campus shops will also participate by displaying comic signs and stickers reading “I can’t speak English today’’. All participants will be charged a €15 fee and will receive Seachtain na Gaeilge hoodies, as well as free entry into all of the week’s events.
An Irish class entitled ‘Rang faoin Tuiseal Guinideach’ will be held on the Thursday for people with Junior or Leaving Certificate Irish who wish to restore some of their Irish language abilities.
Other events organised include an Irish language hypnotist and music from The Coronas will be ongoing throughout the week.
Seachtain na Gaeilge will take place between 8th and 12th of February. All proceeds are to go to UCD Volunteers Overseas (UCDVO). SU Irish Language Officer, Aoife Nic Samhráin, has chosen to donate the proceeds to UCDVO as it’s “a good idea to give it to a charity that is involved in UCD itself as students of UCD are taking part.”
While Seachtain na Gaeilge is part-funded by UCDSU, sponsorship has also come in from Irish societies Bord na Gaeilge, Cumann na Gaeilge, Foras na Gaeilge and Comhairle na Múinteoirí, as well as Centra and Nine One One. The Seachtain na Gaeilge Crew will be helped by the committees of UCD’s Irish societies as well as residents of the Teach Gaelach in Merville.
Smaller Irish-based events are scheduled to occur on a weekly basis after Seachtain na Gaeilge, while the next big event will be the Irish Ball taking place on 31st March.