OUTLANDER star Gilbert Macmillan and an American digital radio station have been lined up to support the fledgling Gaelic Twitter Day on Thursday.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon, comedian Sanjeev Kohli, singer Michele McManus and the Scottish Football Association are all supporters of the day which is gaining interest from across the globe.

Launched in 2014, Gaelic Twitter Day or Là na #Gàidhlig has this year attracted attention from a digital radio station in Baltimore which is to run an exclusive show from midnight BST on April 21 and will include messages from celebrities like Macmillan. It will be broadcast by Guth nan Gàidheal, a radio project by the American Gaelic Association, An Comunn Gàidhealach Ameireaganach (ACGA).

Following the success of the previous two years, it is also intended to expand Gaelic Twitter Day into other social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.

Founder Jamie Wallace raised funds to extend the day’s reach through crowdfunding which attracted donations from across the globe. “As well as almost 40 contributors from Europe, Canada and the US, raising just enough funds to pay for this year’s expenses, it has also given the event new hope for the future as it is recognition that there is a desire from the public for modern community oriented events like Là na #Gàidhlig,” said Wallace, who founded the day as part of his Gaelic studies at Glasgow University and was also the Gaelic spokesperson for Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Last week in Galway, Ireland he was elected to the organising committee of the Association of Celtic Students of Ireland and Britain to assist with social media and to help bring their annual conference to Glasgow University in 2017. The crowdfunder also gave the event its first official sponsor Anndra Micheal MacRae a Thai boxing student from Ayrshire who is studying Gaelic at Argyll College UHI.

This year the aim is to trend with #Gàidhlig and #TIML2016 hashtags and beat last year’s results by gaining at least 1,500 unique contributors, 5,000 unique tweets, a reach of at least 2.5 million and make at least 10 million impressions.

The Scottish Parliament, Historic Scotland, Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Football Association have all expressed interest in being involved for the third year running.

“It has just grown arms and legs – people want it to succeed,” said Wallace. “There seems to be a demand from people to know more about the language and the day is about creating awareness and creating a window into the Gaelic world for everyone to access.

“It is good this year to get the international focus as Gaelic is not just in Scotland – people have it and move all over the place so the language is fluid.”

“The first Gaelic Twitter Day took place in 2014 to see how easy it would be to get the #Gàidhlig hashtag to trend and in doing so raise further awareness of one of Scotland’s national languages – it was also the year that the First Minister of Scotland tweeted in Gaelic for the first time. “Last year was about making Gaelic more accessible to businesses and attracted national celebrities like Kohli, McManus, À dhamh Ó Broin and Carina MacLeod.

This year, Là na #Gàidhlig is showing that it has become a digital festival of celebration for the Scottish language and culture across the globe and is seeking to expand into Facebook, Instagram and Digital Radio.

“As such, the important thing to remember this year is when posting on Facebook, sending an Instagram or tweeting a message, to use both the #Gàidhlig and #TIML2016 hashtags. This helps us monitor the success of the day,” said Wallace.

There will also be a picture competition with a prize awarded for the best selfie (fèineag) that features the logo.

Supporters can also buy a downloadable PDF Gaelic calendar at tinyurl.com/miosachan. Enter MIOSACHAN2016 at the checkout.

The #TIML2016 hashtag is also being used as part of an International Twitter Day called This is My Language 2016, a joint project between Social Media Alba in Scotland and the Friesland language development agency in the Netherlands.