A new school is opening this fall with the goal of revitalizing the Wolastoq language.
The Kehkimin Wolastoquey Language Immersion School will focus on students from Kindergarten to Grade 4.
Maliseet singer-songwriter Jeremy Dutcher pledged $10,000 to help open its doors.
“I’m hoping that giving a big donation like that can also encourage other people who might have access to funds like that can give big as well,” he told APTN News.
The woman behind the school is Dutcher’s mother.
Lisa Perley Dutcher said the school is needed. According to the last census, only 350 speak Wolastoqey.
“We’re doing this to raise awareness but also to give people an opportunity to participate in language revitalization so in whatever way they can help us that would be appreciated,” she said.
Dutcher said he hopes to help expand the school in the future.
“It’s going to create institutions that are going to be around for not just for our kids but our grandkids and future generations,” he said. “So I think it’s a really exciting moment for linguistic revitalization in Wolastoq territory.”
Dutcher is planning fundraising concerts in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.