Multi-media language program promotes Mohawk heritage among TMT youth

Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na representatives, Chief Donald Maracle from Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte , and youth from Tyendinaga pose with Tsitha and Tsianito, two characters created through the Ontario Trillium Foundation funding. Photo by Michael Wihse Green.

Sarah Williams
Beaver Staff

In 2017 Tsi Tyonnheht Onkwawen:na (TTO) Language and Cultural Centre received a $317,700 Ontario Trillium Fund Grant to help support the Mohawk heritage, language and culture within the youth of Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory.

This past Friday, TTO invited members of the public for an update on their success with this endeavour.  Local MPP Daryl Kramp and Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) volunteer Don DeGenova were on site to congratulate the centre on their hard work and to hear more about how the English/Mohawk bilingual children’s learning programs are making a difference in the community.

“Language and cultural learnings enhance a child’s positive realization of identity and supports healthy development in children. This project is creating digital tools that will help us nurture in each child a positive self-image; enhance social and life skills based on our Kanyen’kehaka Language, traditional values and knowledge and build pride and confidence as Kanyen’kehaka children,” said Callie Hill, Executive Director of TTO Language and Cultural Centre.

Tyendinaga has a rapidly growing population of children aged four to 12, which represents about 15 per cent of the community.

85 per cent of these children lack adequate access to teaching that build strong cultural identity and affinity with heritage and language.

TTO was formed in 2000 with the task of strengthening and expanding its outreach to children to improve their health and development while preserving the Kanyen’kehaka culture and identity for generations  to come.

“This is an investment in our community’s future by ensuring the rich Mohawk language and culture are well-supported within our young citizens and leaders of tomorrow,” enthused Kramp last Friday.

error: Content is protected !!