The Saipan Aging Office wishes that more students would visit the elderly in Garapan, even for a short while, similar to the annual Language Immersion Project of the Kagman Elementary School.
At least that’s what Aging Office executive director Walter Manglona wishes.
“We…want other schools to also consider joining this type of activity so that we could run the aspects of trying to pass on information—instead of just education—in terms of history, arts, music, and culture to be able to pass it on the next generation,” said Manglona.
About 25 Kindergarten students visited the Aging Office two weeks ago, under the Language Immersion Project of the Public School System, during which Manglona expressed a desire to connect with other schools.
“Right now, KagES had been doing this [Language Immersion Project] while other schools have been coming here from time to time,” Manglona said. “But, if they would like to make that [regularly] scheduled, they are free to contact Jackie Limes, our new activities coordinator.”
Limes said singing and dancing are some of the possible interactions between the man’amko and the students.
The Language Immersion Project is a project funded by a grant from the Association of Native Americans that kicked off the first three years of the project. According to Patricia Kapileo, project director of the Leliyal Akkabwung Language Immersion Project, PSS has yet to decide whether they would be extending the project to other schools.
“This project is aimed at instilling, promoting, and sustaining our language and our culture. We would like to…continue the project because this is one venue that will keep our dying language and culture,” she said.