More than 180 peoples live in the Russian Federation, of which 40 are indigenous minorities of the North, Siberia, and the Far East. These peoples have a unique culture, immense potential and historical experience. Today, it is increasingly difficult for indigenous minorities to maintain their traditional livelihoods and preserve their national and cultural identity.
Sakhalin Oblast is a multi-ethnic region, the historical homeland of four major ethnic groups of Sakhalin indigenous minorities: Nivkhs, Uilta (Orok), Evenks, and Nanais.
According to UNESCO, all Sakhalin indigenous minorities languages are endangered or on the verge of extinction. Mother tongue education and the availability of necessary literature play a leading role in preserving the languages, cultures, traditions, and identity of indigenous minorities.
At the same time, serious problems in the preservation of linguistic and cultural heritage can be solved only with practical cooperation between the state, business and civil society.
One of the company’s objectives is to contribute to the sustainable development and growth of indigenous peoples’ capacity, including preserving, developing, and promoting their unique cultures and languages. For many years, the company has helped conduct linguistic and folklore research and publish books in indigenous languages of Sakhalin indigenous minorities, including books based on their oral folk art. Sakhalin Energy supports traditional economic activities, publishes corporate promotional products in Sakhalin indigenous minorities style, initiates and implements educational, cultural and sports projects at various levels.
The United Nations proclaimed the International Decade of Indigenous Languages from 2022 to 2032 to draw attention to the loss of indigenous languages and the need to preserve, revitalize and promote them at the national and international levels. The relevant document was adopted at the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
The United Nations previously declared 2019 the International Year of Indigenous Languages (the Year of Languages). In the Russian Federation, an organizing committee was established for the preparation and observance of the Year of Languages in the Russian Federation, which included Sakhalin Energy. The measures taken by the company to preserve, develop and popularise the linguistic heritage of the small indigenous minorities of the North of Sakhalin are part of the federal plan for the International Year of Indigenous Languages. The measures taken by the company to preserve, develop and popularise the linguistic heritage of Sakhalin indigenous minorities became a part of the federal plan for the International Year of Indigenous Languages.
For Sakhalin Energy, interaction with Sakhalin indigenous minorities is one of the priorities. The preservation of the Sakhalin indigenous minorities languages is one of the key areas of the company’s social activities. Consistently following the concept “preserve − develop − promote”, the company, together with partners, carries out permanent work on safeguarding the intangible cultural heritage of Sakhalin indigenous minorities.
In 2021, Russia established the National Organising Committee to prepare and hold the International Decade of Indigenous Languages (Decade of Languages) in 2022−2032 in the Russian Federation. The Committee comprises representatives of federal ministries, heads of regions, figures of science, culture, education, representatives of industry, mass media, organizations of indigenous minorities and Sakhalin Energy.
For the Decade of Languages, the company prepared a plan of measures to preserve and popularise the linguistic heritage of Sakhalin indigenous engaging representatives of Sakhalin indigenous ethnic groups, authorities and stakeholders, with the participation of indigenous peoples, government authorities and stakeholders, to effectively support, revitalise and develop the languages of the Sakhalin indigenous minorities.
Key events initiated by Sakhalin Energy in 2022: