Na Gaisgich Òga

Na Gaisgich Òga | The Young Heroes is a Gaelic mentorship program for youth, run by Colaisde na Gàidhlig (The Gaelic College), in partnership with Iomairtean na Gàidhlig | Gaelic Affairs of Nova Scotia. Applicants must be between 10 and 16 years old, show a keen interest in Gaelic language and culture, and must be a resident of Nova Scotia. Na Gaisgich Òga gives students the opportunity to improve their language skills, participate in Gaelic culture (song, storytelling, music, dance, food traditions, and more), meet local native Gaelic speakers, and develop a deeper connection with the Gaelic community in Nova Scotia. The motto for Na Gaisgich Òga comes from the Gaelic proverb, “Thugam is Bhuam (To me and From me) referring to knowledge being acquired (to me), and shared and passed on to others (from me).

Weekend Sessions:

Between September and March, students will participate in 8 weekend sessions at the Gaelic College where they will be engaged in Gaelic immersion and cultural learning with a variety of experienced instructors. Students arrive Friday evening and stay onsite until Sunday afternoon. Chaperones for weekend sessions are coordinated by the program director and consist of parents who are willing to volunteer (criminal records and vulnerable sectors checks are required). 

Mentor Sessions:

In addition to weekend sessions, students will be paired with a language mentor, a Gaelic speaker from their community who they will meet with regularly throughout the program. The primary goal is to find a mentor who lives close in proximity to the student; however, some travel may still be required for mentor sessions. At the end of the first weekend session at the Gaelic College, parents and mentors will have the opportunity to meet in person to discuss a schedule and meeting place for mentor sessions. 

For more information please email Colin MacDonald:

Deadline for applications: July 31, 2023

  • Open to Nova Scotians ages 10 – 16
  • Applicants must demonstrate a keen interest and commitment to the Gaelic language and culture in Nova Scotia
  • Must show the intention to use Gaelic every day and to pass it on to others such as family, friends, and community.
  • Should have ample support and encouragement from family in regards to speaking Gaelic and cultural learning
  • Parents/Guardians must be willing to assist with transportation to group sessions at The Gaelic College and mentor sessions.
  • Participants will complete a total of 190 hours of learning:
    • 100 hours of Gaelic immersion
    • 60 hours of cultural learning (history/folklore)
    • 30 hours of mentorship (5 hrs/month)
  • Motivate students to learn, enjoy, share, and champion Gaelic Nova Scotia
  • Provide young learners with an opportunity to be immersed in Gaelic language and culture
  • Bring students closer to functional fluency in the language
  • Cultivate a sense of identity as young Gaels living in Nova Scotia
  • Enlighten youth to become aware and to respect intergenerational learning opportunities in regards to Gaelic cultural acquisition
  • Develop an awareness in youth of the unique opportunity they have to contribute to the growth of the language
  • Tuition: $750

Ask the Program Director about financial support that may be available through Colaisde na Gàidhlig and other community groups.  

8 Weekend Sessions at Colaisde na Gàidhlig

[100 hours of immersion | 60 hours of cultural learning]:   

  1. September 15th – 17th
  2. September 29th – October 1st
  3. October 20th – 22nd
  4. November 10th – 12th
  5. December 8th – 10th
  6. January 12th – 14th
  7. February 2nd – 4th
  8. March 1st – 3rd

Mentor Sessions at Colaisde na Gàidhig & In-community

[30 hours of mentorship]:

  • September 17th – Guided mentorship at Colaisde na Gàidhlig (5 hours)
  • October 8th – In-community (2 hours)
  • October 29th – In-community (2 hours)
  • November 5th – In-community (2 hours)
  • November 26th – In-community (2 hours)
  • December 17th – In-community (2 hours)
  • January 7th – In-community (2 hours)
  • January 14th – Guided mentorship at Colaisde na Gàidhlig (5 hours)
  • January 28th – In-community (2 hours)
  • February 11th – In-community (2 hours)
  • February 25th – In-community (2 hours)
  • March 3rd – Guided mentorship & Closing Céilidh at Colaisde na Gàidhlig (5 hours)

For more information, contact Gaelic Director Colin MacDonald at