image credit: Owen Perry
Language revitalization efforts have been underway in Klemtu for decades, beginning with development of the Xai’xais language curriculum at the Kitasoo Community School. In addition, since the early 1990s a major documentation effort has been made for Sgüüx̱s, a dialect of Southern Tsimshian, the language of the Kitasoo people.
The Kitasoo Xai’xais Language Revitalization project is steered by the Kitasoo Xai’xias Languages Working Group (KXLWG) under the guidance of the Kitasoo Xai’xais Nation Council’s Resource Stewardship Department. Our group works together to document, save, teach and revive Kitasoo & Xai’xais languages so we may preserve them for future generations and reincorporate them into daily life.
Another important component of the project is getting the community involved in the language revitalization effort by hosting quarterly community language meetings to exchange ideas, to learn and celebrate KX heritage languages and to share the language resource materials developed by the KXLWG. Community members can also pick up learning materials at the Resource Stewardship Department in the KX Nation Office.
Our vision for the language revitalization project is to see Xai’xais and Sgüüx̱s fluency restored to a large percentage of the population of Klemtu. Over time, continued opportunities for the community to learn, share, and practice heritage languages will lead to a revitalized appreciation of and ability to use these languages in everyday life. Restoring pride in KX languages is critical to protecting our cultural heritage and strengthening the identity and sovereignty of the Kitasoo Xai’Xais Nation.
The KXLWG has built a relationship with the First Peoples’ Cultural Council by engaging them with thorough and reliable funding applications and project reporting. This will help to ensure continued language project funding and success into the future.
image credit: Moonfish Media