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Ugandans in Australia start a language school

The Ugandan community in Australia have started a language school to ensure links to their native country remain strong.

At weekends, volunteers in Adelaide teach Luganda to young people which helps to create a sense of identity.

“Because of that reason of helping our children identify with where they come from, communicate with their relatives who don’t speak English, that is why we felt the drive of teaching them how to speak the local language”, said Luganda teacher, Brenda Noweka.

For others, it’s about preserving a language whilst creating a sense of community.

“To preserve a language is critical for a person’s self-expression, for their identity, and also most importantly for their socialisation because you need to speak a language to be part of a community”, explained Ugandan academic, Ibrahima Diallo, from the University of South Australia.

Learning Luganda, the most widely spoken native language in Uganda is essential to communicate with relatives in the home country.

“We want our kids to be able to relate to people back home and we don’t want them to lose their cultural identity, so when they go back home, it’s easy for them to relate with people back home (…) We are trying to bring home, to our foreign home”, said Jennifer Amuna, a member of the Uganda Community of South Australia.

This year, Uganda celebrates 60 years of independence, and Ugandans all over the world are marking the occasion.