December 19, 2006

Language helps and heals

Grants meant to preserve languageSen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., who is in line to be chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, said he pushed for the legislation because it is part of retaining Indian culture.

Native language programs on some reservations have shown benefits beyond language, he said.

"The kids who are participating in these programs also have better academic performance," Dorgan said.
And:A renaissance of traditional cultures has been spreading through many tribes in recent years, which has helped American Indians reconnect with their heritage, Lindquist said. That, in turn, helped boost self-esteem and combat alcohol and drug abuse, among other problems, she said

"The healing is coming through the culture," Lindquist said. "Language and culture are entwined."

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