“Everyone loses if one language is lost because then a nation and culture lose their memory, and so does the complex tapestry from which the world is woven and which makes the world an exciting place.” Vigdis Finnbogadottir, UNESCO’s Goodwill Ambassador for Languages, Former President of Iceland
- Half of the world’s 6000 to 7000 languages are in danger of extinction.
- International Mother Language Day, celebrated annually on February 21, aims to promote the recognition and practice of the world’s mother tongues, particularly minority ones.
- UNESCO member states are helping to protect and revitalize our rich cultural diversity by promoting languages as a means of communication, interaction and understanding among different peoples.
- This year, UNESCO Headquarters plays host to a unique exhibition of children’s exercise books from around the world illustrating the process by which children learn and master the use of written literacy skills in the classroom.
- The Organization will continue to promote multilingualism through its educational and cultural programmes to protect the world’s oral and intangible heritage.