Yesa:sahį Language Project
Welcome to all who come here.
The Yesa:sahį Language Project is a non-profit organization owned and operated by the Monacan, Haliwa-Saponi, Sappony, Occaneechi, and Ohio Saponi communities. The YLP's mission is to preserve our ancestral language and catalyze a strong future for our culture and our communities by restoring Yesa:sahį to everyday use.
We are awakening the voices of our ancestors by living and speaking their language.
We have inherited this language from those who came before us, and we are preserving it for those who will come after us.
We accomplish our mission to restore and preserve Yesa:sahį through documentation, teaching, research, collaboration, and traditional practices, carried out by Yesáh community members, researchers, teachers, elders, storytellers, and learners.
Yesáh Community Literacy
We support a monthly, free online language class for members of Yesáh communities, and help to coordinate two immersive language gatherings per year, hosted by the College of William & Mary and Virginia Tech.
If you are Yesáh and would like to join our classes or extend our language offerings to your community, please reach out by email: email@example.com.
Yesáh Cultural Learning
Our language exists in living relationship with our history, our present, and our future. It is a reflection and a guide to how and where we have lived, as well as how and where we live today. For that reason, effective language teaching must also incorporate cultural practices and worldviews.
We provide a variety of opportunities throughout the year for members of Yesàh communities to learn more about our history, spirituality, and cultural practices.
Linguistics Research & Document Archives
We are working to create a permanent home for the Yesanechi Language Project and establish digital archives (images, recordings, etc.) for our linguistic revitalization work. Archives will be made available to Yesáh community members and approved researchers working through collaboration with Federal and State tribal entities within our service range.
If you are a non-Yesáh researcher or collaborator seeking information on our research or archival work, please reach out through our Contact Form.
We support a monthly Yesa:sahį class, led and offered by Corey Roberts. For more information or to request admission, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Annual Yesáh Intertribal Language & Culture Gathering -- Eastern Meeting
This event takes place in May/June of each year. The Gatherings for 2022 and 2023 have ended. Dates for 2024 will be announced at the end of the year.
Annual Yesáh Intertribal Language & Culture Gathering -- Western Meeting
This event will take place from July 28 - August 2, 2023 at Virginia Tech.
The gathering will feature 6 days of experiential language learning through an interactive and immersive approach that integrates history, culture, storytelling and traditional food and lifeways.
The gathering structure will generally follow the below format:
Morning sessions will be led by Community Linguist and PhD Candidate, Corey Roberts. These sessions will focus on building participants' knowledge and skill in using the language including alphabet sounds/ pronunciation, vocabulary, sentence structure, use of verbs and other grammar and skills that will increase participants ability to use and practice the language. Participants will have opportunities to practice and speak the language with others.
Afternoon sessions will explore the use of Yesa:sahį́ in the context of Yesáh traditional lifeways through a series of presentations and discussions with tribal elders, linguists, researchers and other community members. These interactive presentations and tours will include discussions of traditional food practices, the Yesáh lunar agricultural calendars, Blue Ridge forests and plants, archeological sites, mapping of Yesáh places and more. The conference will include 2 off site optional field trips and transportation to field trip locations for those that need it.
This is a family friendly event: all ages are welcome to participate. There will also be optional free childcare and language focused youth activities for kids 12 and younger during the morning language session (children are also welcome in the morning language class with parents).
Registration for the conference is now open to Yesáh community members! The deadline to register is July 21. However, space is limited so please register at your earliest convenience to reserve your spot! Complete registration at the following link: https://forms.gle/SoWjmjKyJdVQGo7r7
See more information on our Facebook page: https://fb.me/e/eiUrJrcTa