Mi’kmaq Music, Songs and Stories for Babies

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Mi’kmaq Music, Songs and Stories for Babies

Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Since 2002, the Read to Me! program has been providing a bag of books and reading resources to the family of every baby born in Nova Scotia. Since our launch we have given out almost 80,000 Read to Me! bags. The Read to Me! bag is delivered at the hospital bedside in all eleven Nova Scotian hospitals that provide maternity services. To honour the culture, and celebrate the language of the Mi’kmaq population in Nova Scotia, Read to Me! launched a Mi’kmaq version of the Read to Me! bag in 2009. The Mi’kmaq Read to Me! bag contains the first baby board book in the Mi'kmaq language “Weska’quelmut Apje’juanu” along with “Welcome Song for Baby” by First Nation’s writer Richard Van Camp and other reading resources for families. The Mi’kmaq bag was developed by an advisory committee composed of members of the Mi’kmaq community,including an elder. It celebrates the Mi’kmaq culture and helps to preserve the Mi’kmaq language by nurturing new generations of Mi’kmaq speakers. To enhance the bag and strengthen the impact of the Mi'kmaq language we would like to create a CD of Mi’kmaq music, songs and stories specifically for the Mi'kmaq Read to Me! bag.

About You
About You
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Mi'kmaq CD for Babies

About You, Your Group, or Your Organization

Read to Me! Program


, NS

Please confirm that this project could benefit First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples


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What categories best describe who your group or organization serves (check all that apply)

First Nations people, Other.

What best describes your group or organization

Early childhood (e.g. daycare, preschool).

How long have you, your group, or your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

Define your idea / project in 1-2 short sentences

We want to enhance the Mi'kmaq bag with a CD of Mi’kmaq music, songs and stories to support literacy and nurture new generations of Mi’kmaq speakers.

Select the stage that best applies to your solution

Expanding (it has been running for a while, has grown, you know it is making a difference and now you want to expand)

Social Impact
Please tell us about the social impact of your idea or proect

We feel that a CD of Mik’maq music, songs and stories in the Read to Me! bag will strengthen the literacy impact of the bag and help increase literacy levels. It will also encourage parents to talk, read and sing to their baby in Mi’kmaq.

Your Future Goal(s): Tell us what you hope to achieve with your idea or project in the next year

We hope to strengthen and enhance the Mi’kmaq Read to Me! bag with the inclusion of a CD of Mi’kmaq music, songs and stories.

In 5 years, what will be different as a result of your idea/project?

In five years we hope to have a new generation of Mi’kmaq children in Nova Scotia who have heard their own language spoken to them since birth.

Tell us about the people/ partnerships that are already involved and why they are important to your idea or project.

When creating the Read to Me! Mi’kmaq bag we worked with many partners across Nova Scotia including: Sister Dorothy Moore,Mi'kmaq Elder, Candy Palmeter, Mi’kmaq Liason officer N.S. Department of Education, Janet Pothier, Health Advisor, Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq, and Mi’kmaq linguist Bernie Francis. The support of these partners helped to shape the resources in the Mi'kmaq Read to Me! bag to be culturally appropriate for the Mi'kmaq community in Nova Scotia.

If there are other people/partners that you will reach out to tell us who they are and why they will be important to your idea or project.

We wish to work once again with Mi'kmaq linguist and musician Bernie Francis on the spoken word and music content of the CD, as well as Kevin Burton at the First Nation’s Help Desk who has offered support with recording and we are also hoping to connect with many Mi’kmaq musicians and drummers.

Describe the kinds of support you receive (other than money) or will need to support your idea or project (e.g.: donated, space, equipment and volunteers)

We will require access to a recording studio, studio time and technical support for the recording of the CD, as well as support for translation and the talent of Mi’kmaq musicians, drummers and storytellers.

Do you currently have funding for your idea or project?

No (skip next two questions)