A lost language is brought back to life

The Wôpanâak language became extinct in the nineteenth century. A hundred and fifty years later, Jessie Little Doe Baird began to have dreams, where her ancestors wondered if she would bring back their language.

She founded the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project (WLRP), an inter-tribal cooperative project that serves the four remaining tribes of the Wampanoag Nation to restore a dormant language and use it as a principal means of expression. The project now offers a multitude of classes to tribal members, including family language immersion weekends and a summer youth program. Read the full story.

Support the survival of an indigenous language

Language, Art and Culture

Preserving original ways of perceiving and engaging the world

Language, Art and Culture

Preserving original ways of perceiving and engaging the world

A lost language is brought back to life

The Wôpanâak language became extinct in the nineteenth century. A hundred and fifty years later, Jessie Little Doe Baird began to have dreams, where her ancestors wondered if she would bring back their language.

She founded the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project (WLRP), an inter-tribal cooperative project that serves the four remaining tribes of the Wampanoag Nation to restore a dormant language and use it as a principal means of expression. The project now offers a multitude of classes to tribal members, including family language immersion weekends and a summer youth program. Read the full story.

Support the survival of an indigenous language

Approximately every 2 weeks an indigenous language is lost. When a language is lost, a worldview is lost, and diversity diminishes. It is predicted that, at this rate, by the end of this century half of the indigenous languages of the world will be gone. We support projects that revitalize languages and arts so cultures can flourish.

.

Articles

Reviving A River, Reviving A Lost Culture

“The elders used to call Myntdu River their mother,” shares H. H. Mohrmen, a Jaintia Unitarian minister and an environmentalist from Meghalaya. Mohrmen is in a jeep with journalists, who are traveling to cover a unique riverine festival that is hosted by elders from communities downstream of Myntdu. The drive on winding roads in the West Jaintia Hills passes by tall areca nut trees wrapped in pepper vines. Below, a rust-hued riverbank glistens in the sun.

read more

Wanbdi Wakita, the calling of a Holy Man

Wanbdi Wakita, whose name translates into English as Looking Eagle, was born at home with the help of a midwife on a breezy day in October in the community of Sioux Valley Dakota Nation. It was 1940. Overseas the world was at war, but a different kind of struggle was taking place at home.

read more

Reviving Native Languages, Reviving a Vital Lifeline for Cultural Survival

Language extinction can lead to cultural annihilation. When a language is lost, a culture is lost as songs, ancient ceremonial chants and vibrant storytelling traditions vanish. In North America, the legacy of settler colonialism, a violent and racist boarding school system, where Native children were forbidden to speak their mother tongues, endangered many indigenous languages, driving some to extinction.

read more

Grants

Pin It on Pinterest