Members of Latvia's worldwide diaspora - some of them several generations removed from their ancestral homeland - are getting in touch with their roots at an intensive summer school in Rīga, reports Latvian Radio.

Among the students learning about Latvian language and culture is 22-year-old Ian Pumpurs from Florida, USA, whose grandparents went to the United States during the Second World War. He had heard a lot about his roots coming from Latvia in family stories, but now is in Riga to attend a summer school for diaspora youth.

"I've dreamed all my life about coming to Latvia and the opportunity to learn the culture, which I could never do as an ordinary tourist. I cannot really learn the language at home because my grandmother lives very far away. I really want to learn more about folklore.

My goal is to learn the language so that I can speak Latvian to my grandmother for the first time in my life," Pumpurs says.

Another student, Ella Lutere from Washington has just participated in the Song and Dance Celebration with a diaspora dance group.

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