Mining Association of BC commits $125,000 over three years to First Nations language renewal in BC

VANCOUVER, May 6 /CNW/ - The First People's Cultural Foundation and the Mining Association of BC (MABC) announced today that MABC will contribute a total of $125,000 over the next three years to assist the First People's Cultural Foundation with the documentation and renewal of endangered First Nations languages in BC.

"Language is a cornerstone of culture and identity.  By investing in language and culture, we invest in stronger and prouder communities," said Pierre Gratton, President and CEO of MABC.  "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."

"Support for FPCF is also an opportunity to help restore to BC First Nations that which was taken through the tragic experience of residential schools, which contributed significantly to the reduction of First Nation language speakers," added Gratton.

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.  It is how our elders can teach our young people about the land and our traditional ways," says First Peoples' Board Chair Pauline Terbasket. "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," she added.

"Language, land, and culture are too tightly bound to be separated," says Board Vice Chair Dan Smith, an executive member of the BC First Nations Summit. "We are pleased to see the mining industry come forward to support our community goals."

Endangered languages are a subject of concern around the world and are in danger of becoming extinct in British Columbia.  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.

SOURCE Mining Association of BC

For further information:

Pierre Gratton, MABC President &CEO, 604-681-4321, ext. 120 pgratton@mining.bc.ca
Zoë Younger, MABC VP Corporate Affairs, 604-681-4321 ext 116 zyounger@mining.bc.ca
Ian Batey, Executive Director, 250-216-1429 or  ipb@shaw.ca

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Mining Association of BC

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