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SIL Cameroon at the service of communities

The structure that celebrated its 50th anniversary of activity on April 2nd, 2019 in Yaoundé, is still at the service of Cameroon's linguistic communities.
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04/03/2019 - 17:39
Mike Biya
Rédacteur cameroun-online

The International Linguistics Society (SIL) Cameroon is a subsidiary of SIL International, a non-profit, faith-based organization working for language communities around the world. Present in Cameroon since 1969, the headquarters of SIL is located in Yaoundé. SIL works to develop local languages through language research, literacy, training, translation, advocacy for multilingual education and interaction with the Holy Scriptures.

The staff of SIL Cameroon are from more than 15 different countries namely Australia, Bahamas, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, United States of America, Finland, Hungary, United States of America. Northern Ireland, Peru, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Switzerland. For SIL Cameroon, unwritten languages are a top priority. In many cases, speakers of these languages live in geographical, social and economic isolation.

The study of these languages provides practical assistance to local populations and helps to broaden knowledge of linguistics, anthropology and ethnomusicology. SIL publishes its research and distributes it widely to libraries, universities, governments and international agencies. SIL's first publication, Ethnologue: Languages of the World, is a comprehensive resource on more than 7,000 living languages worldwide.

SIL Cameroon's mission is to work in partnership with the government, civil society organizations and linguistic communities to develop and promote mother tongues; to open access to and promote the use of Holy Scripture and related materials in local languages; to increase the capacity of others to develop their languages and to advance academic knowledge and develop professional skills.

According to statistics, SIL Cameroon has 50 years of service in Cameroon. The structure works on 283 languages listed for Cameroon, including 277 languages, 3 second languages without mother tongue speakers and 6 dead languages. SIL Cameroon employs over 200 agents and is headed by Fabienne Freeland. She is the first woman to hold the position of General Manager of SIL Cameroon.

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