Today 25 November 2021 Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey launched a new Irish Business Awards scheme, Gradaim Gnó na hÉireann, which will put the Irish language at the forefront of business in the years to come. She launched the scheme at the new Teach Mhamó center, an Irish Language Childcare Centre on Glen Road, Belfast.
Minister Hargey said: “Businesses play an important role in the promotion of the Irish language and this scheme will encourage and support them to do so. The use of the Irish language in business settings presents an opportunity for both business community and the community at large. Across the north, over 7,000 children receive their daily education through the medium of Irish, an increase of 60% over the decade from 2011-21. These are the customers of the future.”
GRADAIM is a recognition scheme for businesses that use Irish as part of their business, or that provides a service through Irish to their customers. The awards will be presented to businesses for their efforts to the use of Irish in three main categories, namely 1. Signage 2. Branding and Marketing 3. Irish Language Customer & Client Service. This recognition from GRADAIM will inform the public that the business has achieved a certain standard in these areas.
Glór na nGael, a leading Irish language organization with responsibilities to promote the Irish language in business, administers this scheme.
Tá 62 grúpa pobail Gaeilge fud fad na hÉireann cláraithe le Glór na nGael chun cuidiú leis an scéim a chur i bhfeidhm go háitiúil agus tá 22 acu sin ó thuaidh (33 in Uladh). Tá 6 grúpa acu i mórcheantar Bhéal Feirste. Déanfaidh siad gnólachtaí a chlárú leis an scéim agus cuirfidh siad cuidiú agus comhairle ar fáil dóibh agus iad ag obair tríd an liosta de ghníomhaíochtaí molta.
There are 62 Irish language community groups throughout the country registered with Glór na nGael to help implement the scheme locally with 22 of these in the north (33 in Ulster). Of these 6 are located in the Belsfast area.They will register businesses with the scheme and provide them with help and advice as they work through the list of recommended activities.
By the end of 2022 Glór na nGael expects 200+ businesses to be registered with the scheme and that GRADAIM will have a major impact on the use of the language in the business sector in the coming years.
An honorary award of recognition from Glór na nGael was presented to Teach Mhamó, a childcare centre on the Glen Road, Belfast, as a business that has been advancing the vision of the GRADAIM scheme on a daily basis since it opened seven years ago.
Businesses can participate in the scheme by registering online at www.gradaim.ie. The first round of awards will be presented at an event to be held in the last quarter of 2022.
Frainc Mac Cionnaith, Enterprise and Business Development Manager for Glór na nGael, “I am delighted that we now have a scheme designed and in place that will go a long way in securing a place for the Irish language in business. Having a national scheme is a great resource that will act as a stimulus and guide for the business community to promote the Irish language. The GRADAIM signage will be easily recognizable by customers and will inform them on where to find different levels of service with Irish in their area.”
Glór na nGael acknowledges the valuable contribution that is made by the following organizations in the development of an Irish language strategy in the area of business and in the development of this scheme: Foras na Gaeilge, Údarás na Gaeltachta, Gnó Mhaigh Eo, Comhairle Cathrach Bhéal Feirste, Gaillimh le Gaeilge, Gael Taca, Comhairle Contae Chiarraí, Dún Garbhán le Gaeilge, Líonra Leitir Cheannainn, An Clár as Gaeilge and Muintir Chrónáin.