At the 2019 Elders and Youth Conference, the running theme is “Language is Our Superpower." The elder keynote speaker Sally Tugidm Ayagaa Swetzof (Unangax̂) talked about the importance of keeping Unangam Tunuu alive.
Swetzof was born before Alaska gained statehood. Growing up in Atka, Unangam Tunuu was her first language.
“It wsa the language always spoken at home and in the village when I was growing up,” she said from the mainstage. “Nobody spoke English unless they were talking to the BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs) teachers or some other non-speakers.”