Hari Chandra Lawati Facilitating the training
I am excited to share Limbu project progress report. Our effort is helping to aware Limbu communities and promote Limbu language and culture through formal and non-formal education. Our local partner Yakthung Academy is leading to implement the project activities in coordination with local stakeholders-local primary schools, local communities, government offices and college. Limbu Indigenous Knowledge holders and language activists are very supportive to implement project activities effectively.
Field visit to know community's interest
Our staff, Mr. Bhawani Tawa spent 45 days [October to December 2017] at field and had one-to-one meeting with local stakeholders [school teachers, IK holders, linguists and local community people] to know their interests, expectations and ideas about Limbu language and culture issue. Local schools and people were suggested us to train young people to teach Limbu script [Sirijanga].
Facilitator selection and training
As per local community's interest and suggestion, we asked them send the name of facilitators from their community. We provided them basic guidelines and they chose 34 participants [Female: 22 and Male: 12, Limbu: 22 and Non Limbu: 12] for the training. Local government representatives were also involved to select the participants. Participants were made commitment to deliver training skills in the community through non-structured [mobile] Limbu script classes in their respective community.
7-days residential facilitator training for 34 participants was held in Phidim, Panchthar. Five trainers, who are volunteer, were involved in the training. We provided certificate to each participants. We got an information that 15 facilitators will involve to literate 15-20 youth and children to read and write Limbu language in Sirijanga script. They supposed to work as volunteer even though project has to pay minimum stipend but stipend amount will depend on our financial position. Project provided Limbu alphabet, spelling dictionary, training manual, pen and diary. [See Annex 1, 2 and 3]
Why mobile script class?
- To enable minority language communities, especially the women who are not able to attend a scheduled evening literacy class, to learn to read and write in their own mother tongue and Nepali language.
- To enable 6-14 age group of children, unable to be in the formal education system, be literate in mother language and the national language and gradually transit to English and enrol them to local schools.
Some important statements
Hari Hukpa Chengbang, Chief Guest of training closing program said, "We have to involve to preserve and promote Limbu language and culture. For this language and culture must be used in school curriculum." He added that "If you do not able to give best performance this certificate has no meaning for you."
Hari Chandra Lawati, trainer said, "We have to encourage Limbu people to use mother tongue at home and daily conversation with their children and help them read and write in Limbu. It will help to promote, preserve and transfer the languages into new generation."
Anisha Aangdambe, participant said, "This training help us to know why mother tongue is important to preserve our identity and enhance Limbu skills, knowledge and science. We need further training and regular coach to deliver training skills through our literacy program."
All three statements are very positive and challenges too because of limited financial resources we are not able to make open commitment to address their expectations. We informed that local communities are anticipating continue support [training to teachers, prepare contextual reading materials and continue MLE advocacy activities] to introduce Limbu language as an instruction language in primary school.
We supposed to run one script class for 30 participants, collect local literature and language day celebration. But we organised script class facilitator training for 34 participants as per local stakeholder's request. Local literature collection in progress and language day will be celebrated in 21 February 2018.
We [Language Development Centre-Nepal] would like to address people's expectations to change the situation of their life through language, education and development activities even though our resources are limited. But we are committed that "Education [formal and non formal] must train our brain to develop a good system. It must be used in our daily life to develop skills, competencies and use our cultural diversities for prosperity. [P. Kadel, January 12, 2018]
We are grateful for your support. Thank you.
Writing Exercise in Limbu Script
Harilal Limbu demonstrating how to write Limbu