Culture

Calls for Patagonia’s Welsh language programme to continue post-Covid

23 Aug 2021 2 minutes Read
Flag of the Welsh settlement in Patagonia, in Punta Cuevas, Port Madryn. Picture by Gastón Cuello (CC BY-SA 4.0).

There are calls for the programme that sends teachers from Wales to Patagonia to teach Welsh to continue after the pandemic.

No teachers have been able to travel to the region of Argentina since March last year, and some are worried that they won’t be able to do so for a long time yet.

Last March tight Covid-19 restrictions imposed by the Argentine government meant all teaching had to move online.

Argentina is currently on Wales’ red list and the advice from the Welsh Government is to not travel internationally.

Clare Vaughan, coordinator for Teaching Welsh on British Council’s Welsh Language Programme in the country, said last year originally promised to be a “special year”.

She told BBC Cymru Wales: “This is the first year that every bilingual school had their own teacher and there were three taking part in the project with the qualifications and the skills we were looking for.

“The teachers had arrived, but within the month there was the lockdown, therefore that was very difficult.

“The project is funded through the British Council but the Welsh Government is responsible for putting the money in.

“We’re seeing so many projects disappearing, like Erasmus for example.

“We just hope that this project will continue with support from the government. Not just for us in Yr Wladfa, but also for the people of Wales to be proud of.”

‘Virtual’ 

Marian Brosscho, one of the teachers from Wales who went to Patagonia last February as part of the British Council’s Welsh Language Programme in Chubut, stayed in Trelew for a few months and continued with virtual lessons.

She told Dros Frecwast on BBC Radio Cymru: “I’d been working online throughout the years, then came back to Wales over Christmas with the intention of going back this February.

“But of course, that didn’t happen, therefore I’ve been working online from Wales.

“I’ve been doing the usual lessons, following Welsh learning courses.

“One part of our work is to conduct social activities to bring people together in order to use the Welsh language, which obviously is a bit of a challenge.”

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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
2 months ago

Second best flag in the World…when I was in Coleg Harlech there was young lady from Patagonia there studying for a year. She spoke Spanish and Cymraeg but no English, boy was she popular…

Llewelyn
Llewelyn
2 months ago

Is that the right flag?? I thought the Welsh patagonia one was like the Argentine one, but a dragon instead of the sun?

Last edited 2 months ago by Llewelyn
Flor
Flor
2 months ago
Reply to  Llewelyn

Hi! Argentina’s flag contains a sun in the middle of it. Welsh colony in Argentina’s flag (Yr Wladfa) is the one of the picture. I don’t know if you meant that. Bye!

Llewelyn
Llewelyn
2 months ago
Reply to  Flor

Yes, im aware of the Argentine flag, its been around since the 1820s.

I’m talking about the wladfa flag, that is the same as the Argentine flag, but has a Welsh dragon instead of the smiley sun. That was my point.

Llewelyn
Llewelyn
2 months ago
Reply to  Flor

Not difficult. This is the official flag.

340px-Flag_of_the_Welsh_colony_in_Patagonia.svg.png
Last edited 2 months ago by Llewelyn
Chris
Chris
2 months ago

The flag in the photo is the old one, Llewelyn’s post shows the modern version. https://www.crwflags.com/fotw/flags/ar-u_w.html

Llewelyn
Llewelyn
2 months ago
Reply to  Chris

I wouldn’t mind going to Argentina one day.

Stephen Owen
Stephen Owen
2 months ago
Reply to  Llewelyn

I went in 1981 and had a great time, I should go back again hopefully 😊

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