There are only a handful of people in Canada who have the artistic, linguistic, and practical skills necessary to write calligraphies in the languages of Canada.
It is a skill that has been passed down through generations of Indigenous people and is something that most Indigenous languages and cultures have a lot of pride in.
Calligraphy is also a profession that has come to be known as a sign language, but it is not the only sign language.
There are dozens of others that do not need the specialized skills of writing, such as Sign Language, Interpreting and Sign Language Interpreters, and some sign language interpreters are certified in the profession.
The most common reason why Indigenous peoples do not have access to the specialized writing skills needed to write in their languages is the lack of funding.
The majority of Indigenous languages in Canada do not offer scholarships for Indigenous people who want to enter the field of writing.
The National Aboriginal Education and Cultural Centre of Canada (NAECA) has a special program that gives Indigenous people a financial and academic support to learn their Indigenous languages.
The program provides support and education for Indigenous peoples and their families in order to make it possible for them to become successful in the field.
This is an important and effective program for Indigenous children and youth who are not in the formal education system.
“We have an Indigenous population that has traditionally been illiterate,” says Donna Lach, executive director of NAECA.
“When we have access, we have a better chance of learning and achieving our full potential as citizens.”
NAECA is a non-profit organization that provides financial and technical support to Indigenous students, parents and communities to help them succeed in the fields of language learning and sign language interpretation.
Lach is passionate about her work and believes that the Aboriginal education and cultural centre (AAFC) has an important role to play in creating awareness and awareness of the importance of the Indigenous languages as a tool for Indigenous education and culture.
“This program is a fantastic way to reach a lot more Indigenous people than what we’re doing in Canada,” says Lach.
“It’s also important to us that people know that NAECA works with Indigenous communities and is not a corporate entity.
We want to keep the doors open for them.”
The Aboriginal education centre has developed an educational resource for Indigenous students called the Aboriginal Language Resource Centre.
“I think the idea is to get them on the ground level,” says Amanda Lach with the Aboriginal Education Centre of Greater Vancouver.
“That’s really what NAECA’s purpose is.
It’s really a place where we can get people on the phone, get them to a sign maker, get people to the language maker, to get a teacher to help a teacher learn a language.”
In addition to the NAECA Aboriginal language program, the Aboriginal language resource centre is also offering workshops on Indigenous sign language and learning.
There is also an Indigenous language and literacy program at the NAICA, called Aboriginal Education of Vancouver.
Latchi and her sister, Mary, have been involved in a long-term project with the NACCC called the National Indigenous Language Program, which aims to create a strong and diverse Indigenous education system in the province of British Columbia.
The Latchis say that the project aims to provide a foundation for future Indigenous education programs and help Indigenous students and families to become more proficient in their own languages.
“The NACCC is a very powerful voice and a great resource for us,” says Mary Lach who is also the chair of the NAICS program.
“If NAECA had been able to help us, we probably wouldn’t have been able with our parents to learn to write,” she says.
“NAECA has been very supportive of us through this whole process.”
This work is ongoing and Latch and her family hope to continue the work with the National Aboriginal Languages and Literatures program.
Litchi has been a member of NAICA for six years.
Latching is also interested in learning sign language as a way of life and is actively involved in the Indigenous education program.
When asked about the difficulties that Indigenous peoples face when trying to acquire the necessary skills, Latch said that the most common issue is financial.
“A lot of Indigenous peoples are not able to afford a full education.
They’re very much dependent on government support,” she said.
LATCH says that this situation is an example of why the NAICCA needs to be a key partner in the development of the language learning program.