Ms Forbes made the comments ahead of delivering the first annual address in memory of John Macleod, the former president of An Comunn Gaidhealach - the Highland Association.
She will deliver her lecture in Gaelic at the University of Edinburgh today.
The organisation was set up in 1891 to help support and promote the Scottish Gaelic language, culture and history at local, national and international level.
It is also organises the Royal National Mod.
Mr Macleod died in early 2018, having worked to encourage young people in the Gaelic community throughout his life.
Ms Forbes, who worked with Mr Macleod while convener of the cross-party group on Gaelic, said she was honoured to deliver the address, paying tribute to the late An Comunn Gaidhealach president.
“He was a man who recognised his responsibility to safeguard and invest in the language,” she said.
“Most critically, he saw that the next generation needed to pick up the baton.”
She added: “The title of the address captures the sense that as we have inherited a great heritage, we have an even greater responsibility to pass it on.
“I will be discussing the role of young people in taking the language beyond the school gates and into their daily lives.
“We have seen a beautiful musical and cultural revival in Scotland - and it seems fitting that the lecture should fall during Celtic Connections - but we want that to include the language.”
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