Culture and the Arts

Carolinian Affairs Office, Rivers Pictures to produce Carolinian language and culture show

By Lori Lyn Lirio

IN an attempt to preserve their culture, the Carolinian Affairs Office will collaborate with Rivers Pictures to do an educational and cultural series about the local language and culture.

CAO Executive Assistant John I. Tagabuel said the production on ‘Akkabwung Mwaleiyasch Refaluwasch’ or Learning our Carolinian Language will start in August.

Rivers Pictures created and produced ‘Ketungu Chamorro’ or Let’s Learn Chamorro – a 10- part series of educational and cultural show. The show was launched on June 16 and the episodes for season can now be accessed on YouTube and Rivers Pictures Facebook page.

Tagabuel said they are already selecting instructors for each episode.

In an earlier interview, Valentian Rivera of Rivers Pictures said he agreed to work with the CAO and they will soon start formulating and planning of what to feature each episode.

“We agreed to do this with the CAO because we didn’t want to do just one indigenous language and culture. We want both Chamorro and Carolinian to have educational show available on the internet,” Rivera said.

Tagabuel said they plan on having 10 episodes in the first series, where viewers can learn the basic like counting, identifying colors and objects.

“We will also teach them simple phrases that can be used in everyday conversation,” Tagabuel said, adding he is targeting the children as his audience.

“Hopefully, in the near future we will announce it [the show]. It will help the kids learn more about the language.”
He said many children, especially of Carolinian heritage, do understand the language but barely speak it.

“We are targeting them as our main audience to make sure that the language will not die.”

He said their challenge would be looking for Carolinian instructors as there are only few teachers who can speak the language.

“We have limited teachers who can speak Carolinian. The last time, I inquired with the PSS (Public School System) – to work with the language certification – they have less than 10 Carolinian teachers,” Tagabuel said.

On Saipan, Tagabuel said there are only 2,000 to 3,000 Carolinians.

“Not all Carolinian speaks the language. Some of them understand but do not know how to speak it.”

Lori Lyn Lirio
Lori Lyn C. Lirio is a veteran newshen having worked for the People's Journal Tonight for more than 10 years. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications degree from the Lyceum of the Philippines University. She currently writes for the Marianas Variety, Saipan's number one community paper. .

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