Joe MacGillivray has an interest in seeing the Gaelic language become more widespread in Nova Scotia and, to that end, has started up an initiative called Gaidhlig aig Obair – Gaelic at Work.
“I’ve been working at it, more seriously, for a few months now,” MacGillivray, the secretary of the Nova Scotia branch of the Celtic League, said.
“It was an idea I had quite some time back. The inspiration I took for it is; a lot of people who want to learn Gaelic are asked, ‘why would you want to learn Gaelic, how would that get you a job?’ So I decided to try this Gaelic at Work initiative to develop a program where we would incorporate Gaelic into various professions.”
MacGillivray, who lives in Truro but has family connections, on his father’s side, to Antigonish, noted he knows the language is being taught more in schools now and his initiative could work along with that learning.
“A lot of those students will go on to different careers and it would be nice to be able to incorporate the language into those careers, if they desired,” he said.
As for an example of where he sees it in the work place, MacGillivray noted a retail scenario.
“Stores around Antigonish or Cape Breton, where there are some Gaelic speakers, might like to be able to discuss shopping items in Gaelic,” he said. “And people could advertise they offer their services in Gaelic.”
He noted the bottom line is; further enhancing the learning opportunities and promotion of the language.
Along those lines, he is also in the process of developing Gaelic workshops in Truro.
“We’re going to start in late January or early February, that’s our goal,” he said.
“I don’t believe there have been workshops in Truro in the past and it’s going to be coordinated with Colchester Highland Games; there will be a workshop at next year’s games, in September.”
Back with Gaelic at Work, MacGillivray is reaching out to anyone who would like to volunteer for the program planning committee and, if interested, people can contact him at 902-300-4331.