Organizers at a gathering this week in Whitehorse say it’s time to find new ways to preserve First Nation languages.
Yukon’s Indigenous languages are in critical decline and the Council of Yukon First Nations (CYFN) is looking for different approaches to a long-standing concern — how to ensure those languages survive.
About 60 people gathered at the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre in Whitehorse over two days to share their ideas at the “Voices For Change” gathering.
Chief Steve Smith of the Champagne and Aishihik First Nations says the Southern Tutchone language is in decline. He says simply learning the language is different from hearing it and using it in daily life.
It’s a small group of individuals who actually have Southern Tutchone as a first language, and those who actually grew up in the language — that’s a big difference from speaking it from a more learned-type approach.” he said.
Read more: CBC News