YOUNG Irish speakers will have a new meeting place from this week with the opening of Tearmann Óige Aoine in Glór na Móna’s new state-of-the-art Gael-Ionad Mhic Goill.

Tearmann Óige Aoine is an Irish medium youth ‘drop-in’ facility which will open every Friday night between 7.00 pm and 11.00 pm and is open to all young Irish speakers aged between 11 and 18.

It’s a unique partnership between the Upper Springfield Youth Team and Irish language youth and community organisation Glór na Mona and will be supported in year one with funding from the Terry Enright Foundation Legacy Project.

A delighted Conchúr Ó Muadaigh from Glór na Móna said: “Friday nights launch of Tearmann Óige Aoine is a demonstration of the perpetual growth of Irish medium youth work in recent years.

“This is the first Friday night youth drop-in project through the medium of Irish in the north of Ireland and in this sense it groundbreaking. This is a massive stride forward for Irish medium youth practice and an enormous development for both Glór na Móna and the young people who engage in our programmes, who now have access to an additional service at the weekend.

“Until now we have opened for two nights per week, courtesy of Education Authority funding in the Upper Springfield, and we will now have the capacity to extend this to include a third night on Friday in the new purpose built community hub Gael Ionad Mhic Goill and we owe a special thanks to both Upper Springfield Youth Team and the Terry Enright Foundation for helping us with this new development.”

Conchúr added that it is also “heart-warming” that three former volunteers of Glór na Móna are now in paid capacity working within the club.

“This shows the organic growth of Irish medium youth work and how a new generation of Gaelgoirs are taking charge and spearheading this new programme who are all under the age of 21.”