A Brazilian man who wants to become a UK citizen has become the first person to pass a citizenship test using Welsh.
Dr Rodolfo Piskorski said Wales was the only place he had lived in the UK – so he wanted to take the exam in his adopted country’s language.
His passion for Wales also paid off when he asked for help to crowdfund the £1,500 needed to pay citizenship fees.
Most of the cash was raised within a week – and he now hoped to finish the process before Brexit is completed.
“It’s a silly test, like a pub quiz, and it doesn’t integrate you so I thought ‘how can I make the process more Welsh and give myself the challenge to do it in Welsh?'” the Cardiff University lecturer said.
“I’ve heard people talk about Welsh as something quaint, but for me it’s exciting, cool and young – that’s been my experience in Cardiff.”
The 34-year-old moved to the Welsh capital in 2013 to study for his PhD, and began learning Welsh two years later.
Even though he has EU settled status through his Italian partner, he wanted to become a citizen because of uncertainty over the UK’s exit from the European Union.
“The right is there and it’s important to use language rights,” said Dr Piskorski, who is originally from Florianόpolis in south Brazil.
“I wanted to make a stand and show that there are different ways of being British.
“I wanted to show a different element to British identity and make those in power acknowledge that fact and acknowledge the right.”
He took the £50 multiple choice test in January, and learned he was the first to pass the Welsh language version when he was given the results.
Then he faced his second challenge, raising the rest of the money he needs to pay for the full citizenship application.
Following a friend’s advice, he set up an internet funding appeal – and within a week had already hit £1,400.
“The response has been amazing,” said the Portuguese-language lecturer.
“It’s one thing to be accepted as a citizen but it’ a special feeling to be supported by the people of your country.”