I interact with Gaelic in some way every day. Either I am teaching Gaelic or making learning materials for my students, reading, listening to or speaking Gaelic. So for me, every day and therefore every month is Gaelic Month. So Why should I do anything special for Mìos na Gàidhlig?
The motivation for me comes each time I am talking to someone about Gaelic and they say " What is Gaelic?" or "Do they still speak that? I thought it was a dead language". I talk to people a lot about Gaelic, but I like to make a special effort during Mìos na Gàidhlig to get the word out about Gaelic, not only its place in history but its place in the modern world.
Historically Gaelic has been important not just in Scotland but throughout the world wherever Gaelic speakers have settled. It can be seen in place names, cultures and in the cadence of their descendants speech. There are probably millions of people all over the world that have an ancestral connection to Gaelic.
Which brings us nicely to the place of Gaelic in today's world.
One of the great things that Gaelic does is to connect people with their heritage but it is not just tie to a distant past, it is also an connection to a living culture. Speaking Gaelic adds richness to the enjoyment of traditional music and poetry and these days you can do anything from watching cartoons to getting a PHD in the language.
That said Gaelic is still in a precarious place. It is still only around 1% of the population of Scotland that speaks it. So each person that finds out about the language or learns to speak it is really making a difference to the overall picture. And that is what Mìos na Gàidhlig is all about to me, making that difference. So whether you are just learning your first word of Gaelic or you've been learning for years take advantage of all the great events being put on for Mìos na Gàidhlig and all the great resources that are now available on the web and have a great Mìos na Gàidhlig.
Caroline has been involved with Gaelic for more than 18 years. She has degrees in Celtic Studies and Gaelic Medium Teaching.