Writing Event Helps Bridge Divide in the New Multicultural Ireland

The growth of the Irish economy over the last 20 years has led to an immigration boom.  For the first time in modern history Ireland is becoming a multicultural society.  With this change there have been misunderstandings that have led to incresed tensions.  While Sligo resident Brian Higgins was participating in the Landmark Education Self Expression and Leadership Program this past year he chose the vehicle of creative writing to bring the native and immigrant communities of Ireland together. multicultural-ireland.jpg

Sligo Weekender July 24th 2007

Writing event aims to bridge many cultures

A ‘Creative Writing and Performance’ Workshop, designed specifically for Sligo’s immigrant community will take place in the town this August.

The course aims to promote Sligo as a place where languages and cultures are bridges to a vibrant community and not barriers to self-expression.

The free workshops are being organised by local man Brian Higgins who has recently returned from Paris where he has lived for the past five years. In France, he witnessed a country which has struggled with integration problems over the years and have some challenging work ahead of them in order to combat these issues.

He said: “It is important that Irish people recognise the problems that can arise when immigrants are not fully embraced by the community. We can learn a lot from the mistakes other countries have made. Early intervention is key in addressing and highlighting the issues and challenges faced by these new communities in settling into Irish society. We should put the work in now and not ignore the issues.”

Brian studied acting in Paris with the Bilingual Acting Workshop for two years and subsequently enrolled in a Self-Expression and Leadership course run by Landmark Education. As part of the course he has organised the workshops to ‘give voice’ to the immigrant communities in the town through a series of Adult Writing and Performance classes.

There will also be special workshops for immigrant children.

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