Translating Sustainable Development Goals into Native Languages

On June 23th, 2021, as part of the One World Annual projects, the Escuela Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz Y Paz Vallejo Muriana in Guerrero Mexico, presented the 17 Sustainable Development Goals in Native Languages during a global conference in which the U.S and Ecuador were present. Yenni Ibarra Palacios, a teacher from Mexico, described the different stages of how they are working towards translating the SDG goals into the native Tu’un Savi and the process of educating the Natives about these 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

The reason they are doing this is so that the people of Tlapa (where the Tu’un Savi language is spoken) become aware and familiar with the 17 SDG goals. It is also very important for them to acknowledge and make use of the native languages of the region. As part of the different stages of the project they are working towards creating an educational software to help kids and teenagers learn about the UN (United Nation) goals in the many different native language in both written and spoken word.

We learned that in the translating process there were many words that did not transfer over with the correct meaning. In many cases they had to refer to concepts rather than words. It’s been nothing short of a challenge to translate the 17 SDG goals from Spanish into the Tu’un Savi language, but their desire to preserve the rich History of Mexican culture keeps them motivated and determined. Their love and appreciation of the native languages and their effort to take care of the planet has led them to merge these two very important things together. Participants from both the U.S and Ecuador were very impressed and inspired by the dedication put into preserving and acknowledging Mexico’s native languages.

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