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Gaeltacht summer courses at risk due to water charges

Posted by Sally O'Brien, on 14/10/2014. Gaeltacht summer courses at risk due to water chargesTags: Parenting

Fears are being expressed that the new water charges could damage host families' willingness to house students in the Gaeltacht next summer because of high costs in the new water bill. Irish language campaigner, Niall Mac Cafferty, spoke on Highland radio today about the problem, indicating that it could be the ‘nail in the coffin’ for some Irish language courses and colleges, and that it may cause them to close their doors for students next summer.

Hundreds of kids and teenagers spend 3 weeks in rural Donegal every year taking part in Gaeltacht summer language courses. This annual influx is invaluable to the economy of the local area. Niall told the show that the colleges have been a long tradition for many areas in the Gaeltacht with some places set up nearly 100 years ago.
But because boarding houses by local families can take up to 12 students, the families fear that the cost of the water bill will be enormous. He said that 12 showers taken by students everyday plus laundry, toilets and other uses will result in very high water bills.

Niall commented on the show:

“The amount of water they go through is astronomical – they are talking about so much per litre, it won’t be viable to keep them anymore” he said. “With the water charges, it will be the final nail in the coffin” he added.


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