The Visible Invisibility of the Dakhóta Language in Minnesota - Competitive Award

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2016 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Dakhota Iapi Okhodakichiye
Recipient Type
Non-Profit Business/Entity
Start Date
November 2015
End Date
January 2017
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Project Overview

The Dakhóta Iápi Okhódakichiye will conduct a series of interviews with first language speakers of the Dakhóta language to understand the systematic absence of Minnesota's first language through a Dakhóta lens. The project has three objectives: 1) Understand the systematic absence of the Dakhóta language from Minnesota, 2) Understand language loss and revitalization from a Dakhóta perspective, and 3) Create Dakhóta language curriculum and archive (bilingual) from the transcripts.

Legal Citation / Subdivision
2015 Minn. Laws, Chap. 2 Art. 4 Sec. 2 Subd. 8
Appropriation Language

$300,000 the first year is for a competitive grants program to provide grants to preserve and promote the cultural heritage of Minnesota.Of this amount, $50,000 in the first year is for a grant to the city of St. Paul to plan and design a garden to commemorate unrepresented cultural gardens in Phalen Park in the city of St. Paul and $150,000 in the first year is for a grant to Ramsey County to develop and install activity facilities in Ramsey County parks for culturally relevant games that are reflective of the current demographics in Ramsey County.The Minnesota Humanities Center shall operate a competitive grants program to provide grants for programs, including but not limited to: music, film, television, radio, recreation, or the design and use of public spaces that preserves and honors the cultural heritage of Minnesota. Grants made under this paragraph must not be used for travel costs inside or outside of the state.

2016 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Direct expenses
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

A greater understanding of Dakhóta language loss in Minnesota amongst Dakhóta language studentsImprovement in speaking aptitude and increase in language use amongst Dakhóta studentsCreation of Dakhóta language archive materials, andHigh quality and pedagogically consistent curriculum available for school and student use. 

Measurable Outcome(s)

Over the course of the project, we recorded over 50 historical Dakota songs and the accompanying stories.Served 170,000 Dakota people as well as the general populace of Minnesota.

Recipient Board Members
Wayne Bendickson; Neil McKay; John Reynolds; Wil Meya; Clifford Canku; Katie Blue
Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Dakhota Iapi Okhodakichiye
Administered By
Administered by

987 Ivy Avenue East
St. Paul, MN 55106

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