There are 2 Dene communities in Manitoba, Tadoule Lake and Lac Brochet. The Sayisi Dene language is a unique dialect spoken by those from Tadoule Lake, while Lac Brochet's language tends to vary in dialect. The Sayisi were once a nomadic tribe and lived the furthest East of all the Dene. They were called Eastern Dene, which is what Sayisi means, as well as under the sun, when it rises from the East.
At Indigenous Languages of Manitoba, we are committed and dedicated to the revitalization and preservation of Indigenous Languages and want to shed light on the dire situations that our languages are in;
Dene has 13 005 speakers in Canada (0.03% of the total population) (Statistics Canada, 2017), with 810 of those being in Manitoba (0.06% of the provincial population) (Statistics Canada, 2017). The language has a vitality rating of endangered (Ethnologue, n.d), as it is no longer the primary language that children use. Dene is considered in trouble (Ethnologue, n.d) because “intergenerational transmission” is in the process of being broken but there are fluent speakers who are of childbearing age.
Statistics Canada. (October 25, 2017). Census in Brief: The Aboriginal languages of First
Nations people, Métis, and Inuit. https://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-recensement/2016/as-sa/98-200-x/2016022/98-200-x2016022-eng.cfm.
Statistics Canada. (2017). Census Profile, 2016 Census.
Ethnologue. (n.d). Dene. https://www-ethnologue-com.uwinnipeg.idm.oclc.org/language/chp.