18 October, 2012 - Ministers Ruairí Quinn and Leo Varadkar Launch New Schools Programme for The Gathering

Encouraging Primary School Children throughout Ireland to prepare for the Gathering Ireland in 2013

Ministers Ruairí Quinn and Leo Varadkar today launched a new schools project as part of the Gathering Ireland 2013. The Gathering Ireland 2013 is the biggest tourism initiative ever held in Ireland and a new schools project is being launched to encourage school children nationwide to invite friends, family, and loved ones from overseas to come to Ireland for the Gathering Ireland 2013.

The children are being encouraged to become involved in the Gathering Ireland Primary Schools Letter Writing Initiative. Children will be asked to outline the special activities taking place in their community for the Gathering Ireland and invite friends and family abroad by letter or email to join the celebrations.

On a visit to the Central Model School on Marlborough Street, in Dublin 1 both Ministers encouraged primary school children across the country to become ambassadors for the Gathering Ireland 2013 and to reach out to their friends and family members abroad. 

Children are being asked to select a friend or relative overseas, in consultation with their parents, to whom they wish to send a letter or email.  In the letter, they should include some information about The Gathering Ireland and outline what is great about their own community and what will be going on to mark the celebrations next year. The children will then email or send their letter. 

The Minister for Education and Skills Ruairí Quinn T.D. added, “This primary school project is a fun way for children to get involved in The Gathering Ireland 2013. 

“It is also a great way for them to research local history, geography, scientific interests and local people.

“The Gathering Ireland’s letter writing project will encourage creativity, ICT and research skills and literacy which are all integral parts of our primary curriculum.

“I would like to thank Primary School teachers, principals and parents for engaging in this exciting initiative.”

The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar T.D. said, “The Gathering Ireland 2013 is a very important and ambitious initiative for our country.

“It’s not just about the tourism industry but is a project that can have a very positive effect on every town and community throughout Ireland.

“All elements of society are invited to be part of this and I’m delighted to see our primary schools leading the way by writing and inviting people home to celebrate with us next year.”

Primary schools are receiving their information packs including posters and flyers this week. 

For further information on The Gathering Ireland 2013 or for information on how to plan a Gathering log on to www.gatheringireland.com