According to Ethnologue, of the 115 Indigenous languages spoken in the U.S. today, 34 are in danger and 79 will go extinct within a generation without serious intervention. In other words, 99% of the Native American languages spoken today are in danger or near extinction. Dakhota is on the critically endangered language list with one first language speaker left in Minnesota (first language was Dakhota)! The Ojibwe language is not far behind in terms of being critically endangered.. Today with your help we can save and revitalize indigenous languages in Minnesota!
Established in 2006, Wicoie is a small non-profit but a national leader in language immersion at the early childhood level. Unlike many other immersion programs we focus on teaching 2 indigenous languages Dakota and Ojibwe to our youngest community members and their families. Teaching our youngest community members is crucial to keeping our languages and cultures healthy and thriving. We are determined to help grow and usher in the next generation of First speakers of Minnesota's first Languages.
This year, Wicoie is celebrating our 16th year of revitalizing our Dakhota and Ojibwe languages. Partnering with families and the community, we were the first indigenous urban preschool language immersion program created in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We offer books and materials for parents and caregivers who are interested in learning the Dakhota and Ojibwe languages. Adult participation enhances the early childhood learner’s experience, revitalizing and sustaining these languages for the future.
As the cost of early childhood education rises exponentially throughout the country our families have been hit with an extreme financial burden. We have been fundraising to be able to provide full scholarships for our families. We are asking you to partner with us in our mission of language revitalization by providing scholarships for students. For this we will need to raise $10,000 per scholarship. You can chose to sponsor a student fully, partially or make any contribution you feel is appropriate.
“Ultimately the survival of Indigenous languages depends on the will of the community,” Lahoucine Arnouzy, researcher, Royal Institute of Amazigh Culture of Morocco.
Please join us in our work teaching youngest community members our Dakhota and Ojibwe languages. You can help save Minnesota's first languages with your generosity today!
“You’ve got to know your language to understand your culture.”
Beatrice Taylor, Ojibwe
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Arts & Culture, Education
1308 East Franklin Avenue Suite 126 Minneapolis, MN 55404