Annual summit works to revitalize the Oceti Sakowin language and culture

Published: Oct. 6, 2022 at 7:14 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - The annual language summit is being held at the Monument, Thursday through Saturday in Rapid City.

For the 11th year, the Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Language Summit has met to unite the Oceti Sakowin people to support, teach, and share language resources.

The summit was created in 2008 to pass on the language and culture to younger generations. This comes after worries in the Native American community that some children didn’t know the language or their culture fully.

“We’re at a really critical point right now where we need to carry these things on. We need to teach them to our children so that they’re here for generations to come,” said Tusweca Tiospaye director Mike Carlow.

Carlow added that many elders aren’t around to share their knowledge, especially since the Native American community was hit hard during the pandemic.

Since the founding of the summit, tribes from across the U.S. and Canada have participated to build a program revitalizing their languages and cultures.