New Project Creating Children’s Books in Cree

September 12th, 2016

REGINA – A new partnership to create children’s books and other materials aimed at teaching children the Cree language has been unveiled as part of First Nations University’s 40th Anniversary celebration. Led by Prince’s Charities Canada (Canadian charitable office for HRH The Prince of Wales) and supported by the Department of Canadian Heritage, the new initiative builds on the expertise of publisher SayITFirst as well as the language/education faculty and students at FNU to create and share materials in three Cree dialects. Books are written in Cree and English as well as Cree in phonetics so that parents who don’t speak the language themselves can read to their children. There will also be a video app featuring elders reading the story.

“This pilot project helping to nurture the next generation of Cree speakers will create a blueprint for expanding this work to aboriginal communities across the country,” said Amanda Sherrington, President and CEO of Prince’s Charities Canada.

“The First Nations University of Canada provides an opportunity for students of all nations to learn in an environment of First Nations cultures and values,” said Dr. Mark S. Dockstator, President of First Nations University. “By working with partners like Prince’s Charities Canada and the Government of Canada we hope to become a national centre of excellence for Indigenous language promotion and instruction”.

“Through its Indigenous Peoples’ Program, Canadian Heritage is proud to work with organizations like the Prince’s Charities Canada and First Nations University of Canada in support of community efforts, such as this Cree Language program, to revitalize and preserve First Nations, Inuit and Métis languages,” said The Hon. Melanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage.

For more information please contact: 

Matthew J. Rowe – Prince’s Charities Canada

416-576-3969 matthew.rowe@princescharities.ca

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