Pacific Island community celebrates start of Tuvalu Language Week

By Te Ao - Māori News
Source / Ministry of Pacific Peoples

Today marks the start of Tuvalu Language Week for the more than 4,500 people living in Aotearoa who identify as being from Tuvalu.

Tuvalu, which is made up of nine inhabited islands, has a population of approximately 11,000. people and is the fourth-smallest nation in the world.

This year, in line with other Pacific Island nations who have already celebrated their language week in Aotearoa, the overarching theme of Tuvalu Language Week is wellbeing.

“The Tuvalu Auckland Community Trust selected, “Fakaakoigina tou iloga kae tukeli ke magoi mote ataeao”, which in English means, “Embracing our culture and a more secure vibrant future,” said Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio.

“This relates to the role of language and culture in assuring a vibrant future for Tuvaluans throughout the country. This is a holistic view of wellbeing for the Tuvalu community essential in the uncertain times we face, with Covid-19 resurging when we least expect it.“

Tuvaluan communities in New Zealand are also more keenly aware of the impact climate change continues to have on their island home and the future survival of their heritage and language,” Minister Aupito William Sio said.

Tuvalu Language Week will be celebrated online this year, "in a timely reminder of the power of embracing both traditional and new ways of doing things."