Twins Calum and Donnacha Geary were the stars of The Late Late Show on Friday

By Lynda Keogh

May 3, 2021 at 1:31pm

Twins Calum and Donnacha Geary were the stars of The Late Late Show on Friday

The nation was moved on Friday night by the story of one Irish father's fight and journey to providing and ensuring equal opportunities to his twin sons.

The Late Late moved viewers with Calum and Donnacha Geary's inspiring story. The boys were joined in studio by their father Andrew, and sign language interpreter Romy O'Callaghan.

Calum is deaf, whilst his twin brother Donnacha is hearing. Andrew, the boy's father, spoke honestly about the challenges Calum faces in comparison to his brother. Andrew's determination is admirable, and no doubt something to which any parent could relate.

Andrew describes Irish Sign Language (ISL) as a "beautiful language" and says that our country should be more proactive and "embrace that [the ISL and deaf] culture and community and... put it on the school curriculum". Twelve year old Donnacha said: "I do think people need to be more aware that it's just a language, that's all that there is different".

The interview on Friday really highlighted the need to educate the general public on the Irish deaf community; understanding the needs of this community and learning about the areas in which more is required to make Ireland (and the Irish education system) a more fair and balanced playing field for all. Andrew spoke about students being able to take their State Exams in Mandarin and Japanese, but not being able to take these exams through ISL.

Calum came across as a happy-go-lucky boy, with so much determination. The boys described how much they love play sports together, and with their friends - but also reminding us that they're still siblings and siblings do have tiffs here and there! We can all relate to that! Despite loving school and subjects such as science, Calum spoke about the isolation he experiences as not many people know or practice ISL: "I always [feel lonely]. It's never when I'm home, it's always when I'm out. There's not a lot of people who know sign, that's really difficult."

You can watch some of this inspiring interview below -

It's safe to say the boys completely stole the show, Noel Gallagher never stood a chance!

Should you wish to learn more about ISL, you can check out the Irish Deaf Society website. Personally, for a while now, I've been following Sign with Jenny, and she is offering a free ISL Beginners Class on the 6th of May. Places are limited but she also has a lot of videos showing the basics of conversation on her page too.

Lead Image via Instagram/latelaterte 



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