Hipéexnu’ is a newly founded 501 (c) 3 non-profit since August of 2018;
with the professional guidance of Hopa Mountain of Bozeman, Montana.
We were then approved in September of 2018 by the Secretary of the State of Idaho.
WHY ARE WE NEEDED:
- Out of thousands of Niimiipuu dialects there remains only a couple fluent elder
speakers. There is no elder, adult, or youth that can continuously and effortlessly
speak any Niimiipuu dialect.
- There is no place on this earth that one can go and be "totally" immersed in the
Niimiipuu language and culture. Through time, hipéexnu' will make our classes more
immersive by adding more hours to the preschoolers and toddlers; while investing in
youth Learnee's to be the vessels to keep the language alive.
- According to Fishmans 1991, Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale (GIDS), This
dialect would fall at a Level 8 - "the only remaining speakers are of grandparental age."
- According to the EGIDS of 2010 - this dialect is at a Level 8a - "the normal cycle of
intergenerational transmission has been broken. There may be younger adults who know the
language, at least somewhat, but they do not regularly speak it with their peers and are not
WHO WE SERVE:
The majority of the projects will target and benefit Youth from the Nez Perce Reservation community; through language and cultural projects. Currently, hipéexnu' is serving the Little Roots Learning Center. Through grant funding for the year of 2021, we are additionally holding Zoom Language classes for youth that signed up by December 2020. These youth wrote a short response as to why they are interesting in the language, as well a short survey. The Learnees are interested and classes have been going wonderful.
Through this non-profit we will: renew, stabilize, and promote the Niimíipuu dialect by focusing on the toddlers, preschoolers, and youth - Learnees. Hipéexnu'will have staff to lead the Learnee Mentees to becomes vested in the language & culture for future generations.
How We Want to Keep Holding-On
- Clean and safe environments; where hipéexnu' staff wear mask shields; as well as partnering staff.
- Focus, Consistency, & Controlling class environment by having a small student to teacher ratio.
- Infancy to toddlers are sponges; so they will be a priority and will receive many hours a week learning the language.
- Hipéexnu’ will seek out Youth (Learnees) who are committed to the culture and language. Youth will observe language sessions and will have a strong desire to
revitalize the Niimíipuu dialect!
- Youth will learn and observe from the Lead Language Instructor. Currently, this is being done at our partner preschools.
- The Learnees are youth that have a strong desire to learn the language but
are not sure if they want to be teachers. Being a speaker in the community is
- Each year, Hipéexnu' wants to add more hours of language and culture projects for
the youth here on the Nez Perce reservation.
We are NOT Language Researchers. We are Indigenous Language Revitalizers!
Longhouse for Horace Axtell
Bears Paw War Memorial of 1877
Bears Paw Memorial - Horace Axtell Family
Young Lookingglass homesite
tim’néepe – Heart of the Monster – picture courtesy of Clearwater Paper of Kamiah Idaho
Out digging roots with mom.
Artwork by Nez Perce Artist John Seven, grandson of Horace Axtell
tim’néepe – Heart of the Monster
heté’ewnim wéetes - At Precious Lands - Horace, wife, and grandchildren.
Horace in mens' warbonnet
x̣uyéełp – N’Chiwana – Columbia River
Horace Axtell gravesite
Horace and Andrea Axtell
wal’áawa – Wallowa