Limerick’s first Lithuanian school launched with ambassador in attendance

Jess Casey

Reporter:

Jess Casey

The first students of Limerick’s Lithuanian school gather on O’Connell Street

The first students of Limerick’s Lithuanian school gather on O’Connell Street

WITH MORE than 36,500 Lithuanians now living in Ireland, Limerick’s first Lithuanian Language School has now opened its doors for the first time.

Each Sunday, 40 children, between the age of four and 12, will gather at the Limerick Language Centre on O’Connell Street to learn the Lithuanian language. 

Many parents are “delighted” to see the school’s launch, according to founder Irma Hourigan. 

“Parents are delighted they will now have an opportunity to bring their children to Lithuanian classes, where they can learn to speak, read and write Lithuanian, learn their heritage and history,” Ms Hourigan said. 

“This was a long time coming as the main language in most families is now English. I hope this school will not only give kids the opportunity to learn and socialise, but eventually bring the Lithuanian community closer together while also helping them to integrate into Irish society even further.”

Attending the school’s launch was Lithuanian Ambassador to Ireland Egidijus Meilūnas, Lithuanian Association in Ireland chairman Arūnas Teišerskis and Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne. 

Lithuanian will now be taught in secondary schools, with pilot schemes to be first taught in Dublin and Monaghan, Senator Byrne said. 

“It is my hope that Limerick schools could be a part of this scheme in the near future,” she added. Classes will be held every Sunday from 10-1pm. For more information please email limerickbaltija@gmail.com