Dublin School of Mandarin Chinese (DSMC) and the Taiwan Center Mandarin Learning in Ireland (TCMLI) hosted a Chinese youth and adult speech contest, celebrating the 111th National Day (Double Ten Day) of Taiwan and promoting Taiwanese culture. This competition was kindly sponsored by the Overseas Community Affairs Council (OCAC) in Taiwan and Taipei Representative Office (TRO).
Taiwanese folk songs, performed by Dylan, Kyle, Lauren and Annabelle, warmed up the event. Evan Furlong, the DSMC principal, gave a brief opening address and appreciated the wholehearted support given by OCAC, TRO and the two judges: Mr Chris Tasi and Dr Hsiaoping Hsu. Ambassador Dr. Pierre Yang then delivered an opening speech, encouraging the contestants to experience and explore the direct function of speech in expression and communication. He also indicated speech has a cultural function in promoting thinking and shaping identity. In Ireland, giving a Chinese speech should consider the feature of cross-cultural communication. For example, National Day often articulates the critical value of freedom, democracy and peace. The two words Freedom and Democracy were initially translated from foreign languages. Even the word Science was translated from "science" (かがく) in Japanese before it was introduced to the Mandarin community. When we use these modern words, we need to pay particular attention to the profound cultural values behind their literal meanings.
The content was divided into two groups by the age of 13. The participants involved not only the second generation of Taiwanese immigrants but also students from DSMC/TCMLI. Contestants prepared seriously, hoping to win a medal and share their achievements. After serious review, one gold medal, one silver medal, one bronze medal, and one merit award were awarded to each of the 13+ and 13- Groups. The Winner list for each group is shown below (13-/ 13+):
Gold Medal： Patricia Lin / Leah Keeley Silver Medal : Jin Ruei Liu / Roisin Furlong Bronze Medal: Lauren Boone / Dylan Furlong