On Wednesday 10th June 2020, President Michael D. Higgins issued a video message to Gaisce Awardees to congratulate them for completing their Award in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. In particular, the President commended young people who took part in the Gaisce at Home Gaisce sa Bhaile programme, where Gaisce activities were adapted to accommodate Gaisce participants during Covid-19 guidelines.
In his message President Michael D. Higgins said:
“As President of Ireland, may I congratulate all those who took part in the ‘Gaisce sa Bhaile’ programme, and all those who supported them.
Iad a thug tacaíocht leo.
“By taking part, you have embraced the test that is at the heart of the Gaisce challenge: making a pact with yourself to set goals, and to pursue their achievement vigorously.
“Níl sé éasca, tógann sé misneach.
“This is never easy, as no noble task ever is. To do so in these testing circumstances is even more challenging, and I want to convey my congratulations to every participant who has decided to embark on this journey, and to all those who have seen the journey through to the end.
Molaim sibh. Beir beannacht.”
The President’s message marks the close of Gaisce’s Maith Thú campaign, which recognised young people for their resilience through the Covid-19 outbreak. Maith Thú celebrated young people who have completed their Gaisce Award and offered encouragement to young people still on their Gaisce journey.
To date, the campaign has featured messages of support from well known faces such as Irish sports broadcasting legend Michéal Ó Muireceartaigh, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone, former Ireland rugby player and sports pundit Alan Quinlan, Gaisce Bronze Awardee and MEP, Maria Walsh, and Spin 103.8’s Fully Charged presenters Graham and Nathan.
Young people who wish to learn more about Gaisce – The President’s Award, or who need support with completing can find out more here.