It’s 21 February, International Mother Language Day – the day language diversity and variety is celebrated worldwide.
We live in an age where people live increasingly mobile lives, moving around the globe, and calling multiple countries home at different times. Mother Language Day is an opportunity to encourage people around the globe not to lose their mother language knowledge. By retaining mother language competence, even those people who have emigrated to a new country can contribute to the continued survival of their language of birth.
Even as the world’s population becomes more mobile, mother language will always retain a special position in each individual’s life. It remains the language of his thoughts, the language of his dreams. To quote Nelson Mandela: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”