Armagh's annual Irish Language Summer Camp now fully booked

WORD had barely got out last week that Campa Mhacha - Armagh City’s largest Irish Language Summer Camp - was going ahead at the end of July, before all 80 places at the highly sought after camp were completely booked out!

Camp organisers, CAIRDE Teo, are still being inundated with booking requests and they have now set up a ‘reserve list’ as enquiries continue to flood in.

Priority, as always, is given to children attending Ranganna 1-7 in Irish medium schools in Co Armagh, with any remaining places going to young children with a solid grounding in the Irish language from their home environment and to children attending Gaelscoileanna in neighbouring counties.

Now in its 15th year, Campa Mhacha has found a new home in the eye-catching Irish Language and Cultural Arts Centre at the Shambles. Cultúrlann Aonach Mhacha opened to great fanfare on March 6th 2020 and is finally reopening its doors to the public in July 2021 when live performances, music and indoor cultural activities can finally be offered to the public with the easing of pandemic restrictions.

The primary aim of Campa Mhacha is to encourage local children to use their command of spoken Irish outside the school environment. Due to the growth in numbers applying to participate, Campa Mhacha was divided into two different sub-camps and children are allocated their places within Camp based upon their age group. Children attending Rang 1 to Rang 3 are allocated to Campa 1, while pupils from Rang 4 to Rang 7 attend Campa 2.

While the main focal point for the 2021 Camp will be Cultúrlann Aonach Mhacha, Campa Mhacha will also offer opportunities for the children to participate in activities as diverse as drama and music workshops, a fun-packed day at Carlingford Loch Adventure Centre, a visit to the Giant’s Lair on Sliabh gCuilin, a day trip to Dyan Mill Petting Farm and training at a Celtic Warrior School at Eamhain Mhacha. As if that wasn’t enough, the children also have the opportunity to enjoy instruction in hurling and camogie with Ulster Council coach Rónán Mac Uilliam, Celtic arts and crafts workshops, treasure hunts and a host of other activities. All workshops, trips and interaction with the children are delivered through the medium of Irish.

On the final day of Camp, the children will work closely with our professionally qualified teachers and musicians to prepare a concert performance for families and guests that will round off Campa Mhacha 2021.

Team Campa Mhacha is staffed by a highly dedicated and motivated team of teachers, youth workers and a community development team with many years of experience in delivering recreational projects for young people. All camp staff are fully qualified and trained to professional standards and all are vetted in accordance with legislation.

Campa Mhacha is grateful for financial assistance and sponsorship from the Education Authority, Aonach Mhacha, SEACHT, Caife Mhacha and from Foras na Gaeilge.

For further information, please contact Eoin or Failenn at eolas@cairdeteo.com or telephone 028 37998111.

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