Feds announce allocation of money for preservation of Indigenous languages in Sask.
$2.3M will be administered by the Saskatchewan Indigenous Cultural Centre
Saskatchewan is getting $2.3 million through 2020 to "preserve, promote and revitalize Indigenous languages and cultures," the federal minister of heritage and multiculturalism announced Tuesday in Saskatoon.
The money is being provided through the federal Aboriginal Languages Initiative (ALI) and will be administered by the Saskatchewan Indigenous Cultural Centre (SICC). The federal 2017 budget allocated $89.9 million for ALI over three years.
Pablo Rodriguez, federal minister of heritage and multiculturalism, said language is of utmost importance to the Liberal government.
"Language is also how you transmit your heritage, your culture. It's so important," he said.
Rodriguez also said he is committed to enshrining the protection of Indigenous languages into law this session.
According to Charlotte Ross, who applied for and received one-year funding for a mentor/apprenticeship language learning program, the breadth of people the funding can help is vast.
"We're going to be categorizing material, so material will be digitized," Ross said.
"We will be able to listen to the language, the mentors [and] masters will be able to listen to the languages, and we'll be able to upload to the website a story on berry picking or a story on child rearing," she said.
The program is in partnership with the University of Saskatchewan.
With files from Margo McDiarmid