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Language Immersion 

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Mission

To preserve the Rapa Nui language.

Background

Rapanui was annexed by Chile in 1888 and the Chilean government requires the use of Spanish as the official language in government, business, and schools. As a result, the number of fluent Rapanui speakers has drastically decreased, and UNESCO (2016) considers the Rapanui language at risk of extinction. Loss of language results in loss of the traditional Polynesian culture, knowledge and values, and linguistic studies demonstrate that ages 2 to 5 are critical for language acquisition.

The EIF recognizes that increasing the number of young Rapanui speakers is essential to a flourishing Rapanui community. In 2023 the EIF chose to support the Honga'a Reo Rapa Nui Language Immersion Program which provides a complete Rapanui educational and cultural program for pre-school age children, and we hope to continue our support for Rapanui language development in the future. Your donations to this cause are critical.

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