Welcome to the New Year!
We at italk Studios are excited because 2019 is the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages (IYIL).
As stated on the IYIL website, the IYIL celebrates ‘Indigenous languages with the aim to promote and protect indigenous languages and improve the lives of those who speak them… The celebration is also expected to strengthen and reinforce the many standard-setting tools adopted by the international community which include specific provisions to promote and protect languages.’ https://en.iyil2019.org/about/
This is highly gratifying for italk Studios because we have been working with this same aim for over 25 years; respect, promotion and protection of Australian Indigenous languages are at the core of our mission and our business.
We were one of the first production companies to create educational resources spoken in first languages.
We at talk Studios know that communicating information in Indigenous languages is so important on so many levels and for so many reasons. Here are just three:
The Learning Process Engaging Information
While it might seem intuitive to us, it has taken some time for public policy to understand that information is best engaged with, understood, and absorbed, when delivered in peoples first languages.
This understanding has always been at the core of our business.
All too often organisations try to communicate information or influence social behaviour around issues relating to health, law and money by providing education resources laden with incomprehensible English.
For information to be engaged with, and absorbed, it needs to be presented in a way that speaks from inside the culture of the target audience. The best way to get into this space is through first languages.
Keeping languages alive
By producing multiple language versions of our educational resources, italk Studios plays a role in helping to keep languages alive. Our animations and digital stories communicate important social information that is spoken in Aboriginal languages providing Aboriginal language speakers with an opportunity to affirm their traditional cultural identity within a contemporary context. This helps to bring the traditional Indigenous language into a contemporary living language.
At the same time, it provides the general public with an opportunity to become aware of and hear Australian Aboriginal languages. This helps to grow awareness and respect for Aboriginal culture.
Information for Everyone
At italk Studios, we believe that everyone should have equal access to information. That’s why we go to the trouble of producing language versions of our educational animations. A resource that is only written in English is never going to be equally accessible to people whose first language is not English.
At italk Studios, we have taken an extra step to provide equal access to information. We have created the italk Library, a free depository of educational animations and digital stories, spoken in English and multiple other languages. The italk Library is a living archive of Indigenous languages resources.
Watch this space for more articles about italk Studios work with Indigenous languages.
Go 2019 – the International Year of Indigenous Languages.
IYIL organisation registration:
We help organisations communicate important social messages by transforming information into story and song and producing educational animations and digital stories that are spoken in the first languages of the target audience. In the Northern Territory that target audience is often Aboriginal communities. italk Studios have produced multiple educational resources that are spoken in language versions in multiple Aboriginal languages. Most of our productions can be freely accessed from our archive at the italk Studios Library. The italk Library is an important living archive that represents 14 Australian Aboriginal languages, making these languages accessible to first speakers and the wider public.