A new dedicated Irish language children’s TV channel launched by TG4 is set to be vital for the next generation’s engagement with society through Gaeilge.
Cúla4 was announced by Minister for the Gaeltacht and Media Catherine Martin.
She said the new channel “will reflect the diverse backgrounds of children living in all parts of Ireland, but particularly in Gaeltacht and Irish speaking communities”.
Alan Esslemont, Director General for TG4, said that Martin’s announcement is necessary for “the future and the kind of society we want to establish for future generations.
“We also need to think about how children will develop the abilities and creativity they need,” he said.
Additionally, stating that media and television/film productions are “is vital to the development of children’s understanding, attitudes and participation in society. We need to serve children and young people in safe spaces with trusted content.”
Broadcasters are now understanding the pivotal role they can play in endorsing and showing respect of the Irish language.
However, Esslemont highlights the challenges a station could face against the “predominantly English language media market”.
TG4 is an Irish station that broadcasts predominantly in the Irish language. The channel promotes the Irish language and creates many interesting and inciteful documentaries and series about Irish life.
This is a major step forward for the channel by aiming to connect to the younger audiences to portray the native language as something beautiful and not a chore.
TG4 stated that this can only be done with the support of the global media environment. The relevance of the Irish language must reflect and serve the young audiences who determine the relationship and mindset of the association of the language.
In 2021 TG4 announced that they had intended to develop a channel devoted to children. This advancement began in 2022 with Karina Feirtéar being appointed as Cúla4 Channel Manager.
The new presenter for Cúla4 is Niamh Ní Chróinín. She will also act as a youth ambassador and attend public events to showcase and represent the Cúla4 brand.