Date of Meeting: August 9th, 2019

Meeting Organizer: Indigenous Peoples and Development Branch

ISJC Staff Present: Colonel Richard Munn and Kiana Magat

Reporter: Kiana Magat

Which SDG does this topic cover? 4, 10, 12, 13, 15

Type of meeting: Forum on Indigenous issues

Brief summary of presentation of information made

Several individuals who are part of indigenous groups have spoken on behalf of the 370 million indigenous people that exist in the world. The United Nations have marked this year as the Year of Indigenous Languages–with goals to essentially restore the 6,700 languages that are mainly spoken by the indigenous peoples. The preservation of these languages is significant to the growth of sustainability and biodiversity of our planet as many indigenous groups suffer major losses due to climate destruction. In order to revitalize these languages that are at risk of loss, several goals have been implemented that also correlate to the United Nation’s sustainable development plan.  

There are several measures need to be taken in order to preserve the culture and identity of the indigenous some of them include: 

  • Higher access of multilingual and multicultural education to communities. Giving indigenous groups access to these languages that help understand the world. More importantly, teaching the younger generation the importance of maintaining sustainability and biodiversity. 
  • To be able connect with the mainstream world. Working towards these goals shouldn’t only include indigenous divisions. The ‘mainstream’ should also become acquainted with indigenous languages.  
  • More involvement with the government and communities working together to recognize the exploitation of indigenous groups and find ways to support them.  
  • Youth involvement is also necessary in the revitalization of indigenous languages. For instance, encouraging younger people to take policy action through social media and working with indigenous agencies within their community.  
  • Funding is a crucial goal in in order to proceed. It’s critical that raising funding for indigenous languages to be placed in the same priority for tackling climate change. 

What was of particular significance to share with The Salvation Army globally?

The Salvation Army’s significant role in preserving the indigenous language is emphasizing the importance of caring for our environment. As we are all made in the image of God, it is our duty to take care of our Earth and everything that’s in it. It’s important for Salvationists to acknowledge the predicament that climate destruction has placed indigenous groups in. 

Web links for more information 

Tags: United Nations, SDG10: Reduced Inequalities, SDG4: Quality Education, SDG12: Responsible Consumption and Production, SDG13: Climate Action, SDG15: Life on Land