“Everyday Heroes”: Giraffe Award How would you feel if you’re walking past school, or even going to the mall with your friends and you hear people speaking, representing, or taking pride in their language and culture and you don’t know or haven't even heard of how to speak your language? Pretty bad right? Well, Joseph Nicholas and David Francis have proven themselves out of own terms to be chosen to win the Giraffe Award. Joseph Nicholas, 61, a former tribal councilor and state representative, and David Francis, 70, a former clam digger, woodchopper and blueberry picker, went out of their way to help prevent a language who’s already in a severe case of extinction.
Joseph and David both provide acts out of caring. They are teaching the children of Maine’s Passamaquoddy Indian Tribe how to learn a new language, which in this case, is new to the children but very old to them. The language Passamaquoddy is New England’s last living Indian language. They should teach this language to help preserve greater extent of it’s extinction.
Joseph and David are willing to take on significant personal risk. Francis gathers words and phrases for a second edition of the Passamaquoddy dictionary. According to him, if they “lose their language, they will lose their identity, its the last thing Indians have.” Joseph and David want Indian children to have and take pride in their own heritage. “Our own kids had no
sense of who we really were”. In general, culture and the languages we speak builds up our identity. A lot of people are, and would like to be even more proud of who they are and where
they come from. Thanks to Joseph and David willing to take on significant personal risk, these Indian kids in that tribe will have something to take pride in, which was theirs from the beginning. The two also rock the boat to make thing better, and not more