As March is Irish Heritage Month, there are countless gatherings and events planned worldwide to celebrate all things Irish. We at Irish America are encouraging the Irish diaspora to reunite on social media and share the activities they are taking part in by using the new hashtag, #ConnectIrish.
Irish America magazine has been in print for over 30 years, and we are happy to have helped re-establish Irish ethnic identity in the U.S. We have been there to watch the world evolve into a place where social media platforms and mobile phone apps allow Irish people all over the globe to maintain close personal and business connections alike, and it is our hope that these digital tools become the bedrock of a year-long global campaign through which Irish and people of Irish descent can come together once more.
Ireland’s spirit of interconnectivity lends itself perfectly to the ever-growing world of new media forms, and well-known Irish strengths such as reflecting on the past, exchanging stories, striking up relationships, and simply having the craic can now be shared, even in as little as 140 characters.
Irish America editor-in-chief Patricia Harty has a massive grá for the Irish diaspora and is intent on keeping them linked. “I think of my readers as family,” says Harty. “I love connecting Irish people across the generations and seeing the magic happen as they explore their heritage and who they might know in common. #ConnectIrish is a great way to stay in touch and bring the Irish global experience into focus.”
As the first day of Irish Heritage Month, March 1 2017 will mark the launch of this new initiative. Worldwide celebrations of all things Irish, with St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 and Irish America’s annual Hall of Fame awards two days before on March 15, ensure it will be a time to remember.
Too often, those who left Ireland have fallen out of touch with neighbors, friends and old colleagues. Now, those attending any Ireland-related event have the opportunity to share it. Whether it’s with a picture of a favorite Irish dinner, comment on current events or a shared video clip of Irish dancing lessons, tradition is given a new lease of life with the #ConnectIrish hashtag. ♦