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The Feardie Geng

13 May 2020

A new resource aimed at helping children to understand the situation with Covid-19 has been made available in Ulster-Scots, thanks to a collaboration between the Ulster-Scots community and a local author who works to support vulnerable children.



The Ulster-Scots Agency was approached by Eadaoin Bhreathnach who was keen to have her new short story, The Scared Gang Have to Stay at Home, translated into Ulster-Scots.


Agency Chief Executive Ian Crozier said, “When we were approached by Eadoin about having her new short story translated, we immediately saw the value of the project.  With everything that’s going on at the minute it is inevitable that young children will have an awareness of Covid-19 and the damage that it can cause and this may well make them anxious or afraid.  Helping them to understand why they need to wash their hands or why they can’t visit their granny and granda is a challenge for parents and can be every bit as stressful for the parents as it is for the kids.  There are thousands of homes across Ulster where the first language is Ulster-Scots.  We hope that supporting parents and children to communicate about these difficult times in the language that they use every day will help to make the process easier for everybody.”


Eadaoin Bhreathnach has previously created a series of short stories based around her Scared Gang characters to support work with vulnerable children who may have difficulties in understanding or expressing ideas of fear or anxiety.


With the aid of Matthew Warwick of the Ulster-Scots Community Network, himself a teacher and Ulster-Scots speaker, the story quickly became Tha Feardie Geng hae tae Bide at Hame and it is now available to download for free at



The story, which is illustrated by Sighle Breathnach-Cashell, has been translated into a range of languages, including German, Italian, French, Spanish and Irish.  The Ulster-Scots Agency and Ulster-Scots Community Network are now working on an audio version.