2019 International Year of Indigenous Languages

Did you know that 2019 is the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages?

“In 2016, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages, based on a recommendation by the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. At the time, the Forum said that 40 per cent of the estimated 6,700 languages spoken around the world were in danger of disappearing. The fact that most of these are indigenous languages puts the cultures and knowledge systems to which they belong at risk.

In addition, indigenous peoples are often isolated both politically and socially in the countries they live in, by the geographical location of their communities, their separate histories, cultures, languages and traditions. And yet, they are not only leaders in protecting the environment, but their languages represent complex systems of knowledge and communication and should be recognised as a strategic national resource for development, peace building and reconciliation.”

For more information please visit United Nations 2019 International Year of Indigenous Languages.

In Australia The Department of Communications and the Arts (DoCA) is the lead agency for planning the Australian Government’s participation in and promotion of IYIL2019.

As we currently partner with five different language groups, Nyiyaparli, Martu, Noongar, Kariyarra and Ngarluma, we are very proud of the connection our Traditional Owners have to their country. We look for opportunities to support our Traditional Owner’s as they work to keep their culture and their language alive. Through our community engagement activities this year we look forward to celebrating these communities and their languages.