Funds For Language (canada)

Andre Cramblit andrekar at NCIDC.ORG
Thu Sep 25 17:47:50 UTC 2003

Province aids native language organization

WINNIPEG - The province has announced it will provide significant
funding to help preserve native languages.

Just over $73,000 will go to Aboriginal Languages of Manitoba, a
non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the seven main native
languages spoken in Manitoba: Cree, Dene, Dakota, Michif, Inuktituq,
Ojibwe (Saulteaux) and Oji-Cree, a dialect spoken in Island Lake.

Part of the money will go to updating and compiling dictionaries and
books of grammar, as well as translation services and language lessons.

A new survey released by Statistics Canada shows fewer and fewer First
Nations people are speaking their traditional languages. The report
shows only 16 per cent of aboriginal people living off-reserve can
carry on a conversation in their native language, down from 21 per cent
in 1996.

"It's still a struggle, a continuous struggle," says Carol Beaulieu, of
Aboriginal Languages of Manitoba. "I think we have come back, because
now we're able to use new technology to preserve it, for example CDs,
tapes, videos, things like that.That has assisted a lot in the coming
back of languages and the preservation."

Aboriginal Languages of Manitoba, which was founded in 1984, is one of
only a handful of similar organizations across the country.  The
funding announced Thursday amounts to just under one-third of the
organization's annual budget.

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