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Thosaigh na céadta duine ag foghlaim Gaeilge ar fud an cheantair ar na mallaibh. Más foghlaimeoir thú, ná bí buartha: is é an chéad deich mbliana an tréimhse is measa. Ach i ndáiríre, níl an teanga chomh deacair agus a smaoinítear agus baineann formhór na ndaoine an-sult as na ranganna. Agus ná déan dearmad ar an taobh sóisialta de: buailfidh tú le daoine atá chomh craiceáilte is atá tú féin.

Bíonn fadhbanna ann i gcónaí maidir le cúrsaí páirtaimseartha: mura dtéann tú ar rang ach uair amháin sa tseachtain, déanann tú dearmad ar rudaí go héasca. Ach anois tá a lán ábhair ar fáil taobh amuigh den seomra ranga a líonann na bearnaí agus a choinníonn an teanga os do chomhair.

Faigheann tú Foinse saor in aisce leis an Irish Independent gach Céadaoin agus tagann Gaelscéal amach ar an Aoine. Tá leathanaigh d’fhoghlaimeoirí sa dá nuachtán. Bíonn píosaí Gaeilge sna nuachtáin Bhéarla. Bíonn leathanach Gaeilge san Irish News gach lá. Deirtear liom go bhfaightear alt an-suimiúil sa Derry Journal gach Aoine.

Is féidir éisteacht le Raidió na Gaeltachta am ar bith. Bíonn clár Gaeilge ar Raidió Uladh gach lá. Craolann an BBC cláracha teilifíse i nGaeige chomh maith - aithrí mhall atá i gceist. Tá clú idirnáisiúnta ag TG4: áis den scoth atá ann. Ní dhéanfaidh mé trácht ar bhunaitheoir an stáisiúin: tá an toghchán uachtaránachta ar na bacáin agus níor mhaith liom daoine a bheith ag smaoineamh go bhfuil mé claonta.

Is féidir eagrán laethúil de Foinse a fháil ar an idirlíon chomh maith leis an tseirbhís nuachta, Nuacht 24 agus an iris, Beo.

Ta réimse leabhar Gaeilge sna leabharlanna uilig.

Níl an liosta thuas cuimsitheach, ach is léir go bhfuil mórán áiseanna ar fáil. Ba chóir dúinn uilig úsáid a bhaint astu. If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.

RESOURCES

Hundreds of people in this area started learning Irish recently. If you are a learner, don’t be worried: the first ten years are the worst. But seriously, the language is not as difficult as people think, and most people enjoy the classes immensely. And don’t forget the social side: you will meet people who are as crazy as you are.

There are always problems with part time courses: if you only attend a class once a week, you forget things easily. There is a lot of material available now outside of the classroom to fill the gaps and keep the language in front of you.

You can get Foinse free with the Irish Independent on Wednesdays, and Gaelscéal comes out on a Friday. There are pages for beginners in both newspapers. English language newspapers have pieces in Irish. There is a page of Irish in the Irish News every day. They tell me that you get a very interesting article in the Derry Journal every Friday.

You can listen to Raidió na Gaeltachta any time. Radio Ulster has Irish programmes every day. The BBC also broadcasts television programmes in Irish: a case of late repentance. TG4 enjoys a high reputation internationally: it is a first rate resource. I won’t mention the founder of the station: there is a presidential election in the offing and I would not like people to think that I am biased.

You can get a daily edition of Foinse on the Internet as well as the news service, Nuacht 24 and the magazine Beo.

There is a range of Irish books in all the libraries,

The above list isn’t comprehensive, but it is obvious that there are lots of resources available. We should all use them. If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.