The UNESCO’s International Mother Language Day took place on Thursday at Penryn Campus, where more than forty students gathered and celebrated their mother languages at the event created by the Language Team.
The event wanted to spread the important message that everybody’s culture is equally important, and although people from abroad are studying in United Kingdom, they still have a place where they can celebrate other countries, other nationalities, and other cultures together.
Tess Cobb, member of the Language Team, said: “It’s important to organise events like this because we have lots and lots of different nationalities on this campus.Sometimes, I think it’s kind of easy for them to be separated almost because they do lots of different courses.”
She added: “If you’re maybe Spanish speaking or Chinese speaking, you’re bound to run into other people who can’t speak those languages, and at this event they can for once not be forced to speak English and find each other, and kind of support each other and just have fun speaking their own language.”
Free drink and food weren’t the only things which attracted students from all around the world, who decided to live or study in Cornwall.
It was a great opportunity to meet other students, make friends and learn something new about them or their culture as well.
Kasper Heimolehto, a student from Finland said: “Our vocabulary is very difficult to understand, and there is a lot of tongue-twisters!”
Sini Laine, added: “Finnish is like a secret language that no one else can speak.”
There were many students who wanted to gather and chat. Another one was Emilie Broquet from France, who said with a smile: “I love that people are loving my language and they find it beautiful.”
The idea to celebrate languages came from Bangladesh as languages are constantly under a threat. The celebration of the International Mother Language Day is observed since 2000, each year on 21st February, and it promotes linguistic and cultural diversity.
According to the UNESCO’s Endangered Languages Programme, it is estimated that without acting, by the end of this century the world will lose half of the over 6,000 plus languages spoken today.