This campaign is to raise funds for necessary materials for a Cree language classroom in Montreal such as an interactive whiteboard, a printer and tables.
We are only $800 away from reaching our goal! With Indiegogo, reaching your goal is kind of a big deal, because if you don’t, the site takes 9% of what you’ve raised, and that’s a big chunk of change.
This project is really important, but why may not be immediately apparent to everyone.
There are over 60 Indigenous languages in Canada, representing one of the highest levels of linguistic diversity in the world. Over half of those languages are found in British Columbia, and every single one of those languages are extremely endangered.
Only one in four Indigenous people speak their language anymore, because of the deliberate repression and destruction of our languages through Residential School and a current policy of non-support.
Indigenous people can study almost any language in the world beside their own, even in when living in their own territory!
Here I am, in Quebec, struggling to not lose my Cree language. There is only one Indigenous language class in Montreal: Inuktitut from Nunavik. This program is fairly recent. You cannot learn Cree here, or Mohawk, or Innu-Aiman, or Atikamekw, or Anishinaabe, or Mi’maq, or Maliseet, or Abenaki, or Wendat or Naskapi, despite these 10 languages all being represented within this province.
Making things even harder for those of us who speak Plains Cree, is our dialect is not very similar to the Cree spoken in Quebec. So if we were able to whip up institutional support and get government funding, we would only be able to pitch a class that teaches an Indigenous language found in Quebec…which Plains Cree is not.
What I’m telling you is, there is widespread institutional and political apathy towards maintaining Indigenous languages as it is. If you dare be mobile and leave your territory, you are facing further marginalisation because even if there is some movement in your area towards making Indigenous languages accessible, the focus will be on local languages.
Yes, this makes sense from a cost-benefit analysis point of view, but it ignores our reality, wherein Indigenous people CONTINUE to be very mobile, and where urbanisation is a serious factor.
One way we can address this issue is to create a system of support for language courses that do not need massive funds, where information can be shared across wide geographic spaces via social media platforms etc. This is serious DIY ethic, because it is abundantly clear that no Canadian government values our languages the way we do, and we wait on them to come around and see our languages as inherently valuable, we’ll have no fluent speakers left.
This is not just one classroom I’m asking you to fund. I’m asking you to help me prove that this can be done…that we can create high levels of fluency in relatively little time, in urban spaces outside of our traditional territories. Because if we can do this, then it can be replicated across this country. With a very small initial investment in materials, these classrooms can become a viable, immediate answer to linguistic loss.
And as always, for those who need just a little more incentive, if you contribute $5 or more, you will be entered into a draw to win either a pair of rabbit-fur mukluks, or rabbit-fur moccasins!
Hey guys, my friends cousin was hit by a car in October and ended up dying because of the injuries. It was a hit and run. The man who killed Jesse Roach got off on the charges of Obstruction of Peace and Failure to Report an Accident. Thats it. A young man died, and that’s the “justice” his poor family gets for their loss. Sign this petition, it takes like three seconds, and help bring some closure to a community who lost another young person.
i spent almost all my money but at least christmas gifts are paid for and I HAVE NEW CLOTHES
Saw this on the fb and had to share cause it made me laugh -mod A
In a groundbreaking 324-page report on tribal safety released last month, Eid and his eight co-commissioners found that Native American juveniles serve sentences roughly twice as long as those served by any other racial or ethnic group, and that two-thirds of all juveniles serving time in federal prisons are Native. “It’s extraordinary,” says Eid, a law professor and private attorney. “(Current laws) create a systemic inequity that’s absolutely appalling.”
The good news is that system can be fixed through a combination of federal, state and tribal actions over the next ten years, say Eid and his co-authors. The 40 recommendations in the report, “Roadmap for Making Native America Safer,” include ways to revamp the juvenile justice system to cut recidivism, increase local jurisdiction and ultimately send fewer Native youth to federal prisons. The report also calls for reducing the gaps in public safety that may be at the root of many violent crimes in Native communities. Rates of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder among Native youth are roughly three times the national average, for example – about the same as those of veterans returning from wars in the Middle East."