21 February has been declared as the International Mother Language Day by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in November 1999 (30C/62).This declaration was a great comfort for all peoples speaking different languages and seeking recognition of their right of their own mother tongue.
On 16 May 2009 the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution A/RES/61/266 called upon Member States “to promote the preservation and protection of all languages used by peoples of the world”. By the same resolution, the General Assembly proclaimed 2008 as the International Year of Languages, to promote unity in diversity and international understanding, through multilingualism and multiculturalism.
International Mother Language Day has been observed every year since February 2000 to promote linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. The date represents the day in 1952 when students demonstrating for recognition of their language, Bangla, as one of the two national languages of the then Pakistan, were shot and killed by police in Dhaka, the capital of what is now Bangladesh.
Languages are the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing our tangible and intangible heritage. All moves to promote the dissemination of mother tongues will serve not only to encourage linguistic diversity and multilingual education but also to develop fuller awareness of linguistic and cultural traditions throughout the world and to inspire solidarity based on understanding, tolerance and dialogue.
Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO issued the following message for International Mother Language Day 2012
“The language of our thoughts and our emotions is our most valuable asset. Multilingualism is our ally in ensuring quality education for all, in promoting inclusion and in combating discrimination. ”
Update on 21 February 2012
There are many educational establishments in many countries which offer language courses.We can share about such establishments here.
Kanda University of International Studies (KUIS), founded in 1987 in Makuhari in Chiba Prefecture, is a private university dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in international studies, particularly in the areas of foreign languages, intercultural communication, Japanese culture, linguistics, and international studies. There are six departments English, Chinese, Spanish, Korean, International Communication, and Languages and Culture.
The Graduate School of Language Sciences was founded 1992. It offers an M.A. program in Japanese/English Linguistics, Japanese/English Pedagogy and English Communication Studies as well as a Ph.D. in Linguistics. In 1996, the Graduate School was designated as a “Center of Excellence (COE)” by the Japanese Ministry of Education. In 2001, the Center for Language Sciences (CLS) was established to continue and deepen COE’s research achievements.
The primary goal of Kanda University of International Studies is to educate internationally oriented citizens who can contribute to international understanding and world peace. Students are trained in their language major about the history and culture of the country in which their language major is spoken.
You can visit the website of KUIS at this link:http://www.kandagaigo.ac.jp/kuis/e/about/index.html