The Mining Association of B.C. will give $125,000 over the next three years to help renew First Nations languages in B.C.
The First People’s Cultural Foundation and the Mining Association of B.C. (MABC) announced Friday that MABC will contribute the funds to assist the First People’s Cultural Foundation with the documentation and renewal of endangered First Nations languages in B.C.
“Language is a cornerstone of culture and identity,” says Pierre Gratton, president and CEO of MABC. “By investing in language and culture, we invest in stronger and prouder communities. It is also an investment in education, in youth and thus in the future success of BC’s First Nations. In this, we all benefit.”
The First People’s Cultural Foundation will be able to leverage MABC’s funding contribution to secure other funding from government partners.
“Language is the heart of our culture,” says First Peoples’ board chair Pauline Terbasket. “It is how our elders can teach our young people about the land and our traditional ways. The young people learning these languages are the future leaders of our communities, and they need to understand our past to make the right choices about our future.”
“Language, land, and culture are too tightly bound to be separated,” says board vice-chair Dan Smith, an executive member of the B.C. First Nations Summit. “We are pleased to see the mining industry come forward to support our community goals.”
The FPCF is committed to saving indigenous languages and working with First Nations to preserve their culture.
The donation will be used to support language archiving around the province and reach out to First Nations to support the renewal of First Nations’ languages.