RTÉ Presenter and Dancing with the Stars star Marty Morrisey launches nationwide festival celebrating adult learning

Dancing with the Stars contestant and RTÉ sports commentator Marty Morrissey was on hand to launch the 12th annual Adult Learners’ Festival at an event in Dublin today.

The Adult Learners’ Festival is organised by the national adult learning organisation, AONTAS, and is a week-long celebration of adult learning taking place nationwide the 5th to 9th March. The theme of this year’s festival is “Love Lifelong Learning”, and hundreds of information events, classes and workshops will be taking place across the island of Ireland throughout the week. Marty Morrissey was unveiled as the special guest at the STAR Awards, which will take place during the festival and awards excellence among adult learning organisations.

Commenting at the launch today, Niamh O’Reilly, CEO of AONTAS, said: “For somebody who may have been out of education for a long time, or who had negative educational experiences in the past, it can be a hugely daunting step. Our annual Adult Learners’ Festival is an opportunity to showcases the diversity of learning options available to people around Ireland whether community education, their local ETB or higher education institution, there is something for everyone. Learners can ease themselves back into education with a taste of some of the programmes on offer in a welcoming setting.

“There’ll be hundreds of free events taking place during the festival so we are encouraging everyone thinking of returning to learning to attend an event and see what’s on offer to them. The transformative effect that education can have on individuals, families and communities can be extremely powerful.”

Also speaking at the launch of the Adult Learners’ Festival was Marty Morrissey, who said, “I’m delighted to be involved with the AONTAS Adult Learners’ Festival for the second year in a row. I’ve seen first-hand the benefits learning something new can bring and the Adult Learners’ Festival is a wonderful opportunity for people thinking of returning to education to try out something different – whether it’s an art course, or learning how to dance! Adult education benefits individuals and communities throughout Ireland so we’re calling on people to see what’s on in their area!”