An Old Massett man had social media in a flutter after showcasing the importance of preserving the Haida language during the Global Television reality show Big Brother which aired March 3.
Keifer Collison, a contestant on season nine of the show who grew up in Haida Gwaii explains to his house-mates in the show segments how vital it is to preserve the language.
“In our community, we have only like five fluent speakers, so the language is disappearing,” he said to fellow contestants on the show.
Collison, who now lives in Terrace, paid homage to his cultural roots and background by speaking a monologue in the Haida language which he said translates to:
“Long ago we were strong. Long ago we were one. Do you think we are a strong nation? I think we are a strong nation. I want to be the leader.”
Show contestants were seen with expressions of awe at the 32-year-old radio announcer’s linguistic skills and thanked him for sharing.
“It’s a real struggle to get it back. It’s one of the hardest dialects in the world,” he said.
Big Brother is a T.V. reality production where 14 contests live as housemates competing for $100,000 in the weekly elimination show.
To see the Haida Language segment of Big Brother:
K-J Millar | Journalist
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