Written by Dyami Millarson
As of this year, readers will find a ‘Support Our Work’ section at the bottom of each article giving the option to donate; every donated amount makes a difference for our organisation. Foundation Operation X is trying to make ends meet. Our organisation has grown significantly with the addition of a whole swathe of Frisian languages.
So the time has come for making readers aware that they may contribute. We have thus far mostly financed ourselves, and we asked for donations only irregularly. We did, however, manage to purchase our domains and WordPress subscription with donations. This showed to us that readers can make a huge difference and that we do not need to carry the financial burden alone; readers can make our burden lighter.
The reason we do not seek government subsidies in the Netherlands is because we wish to stay fully independent. We are a non-politically aligned charitable organisation, and that gives us significant leeway to do whatever we deem necessary for the study, promotion and preservation of endangered languages.
With a very humble tone, we can claim that Operation X is unique. There is, as far as we are aware, absolutely no other organisation in Europe that operates in the same way we operate. The challenge does, however, remain to stay who we are and to resist the temptations of conforming. We do not even want to consider what would happen if Operation X did not survive. The disappearance of Operation X would be a disaster.
So we are always working hard to survive. Only such hard work can guarantee our survival against all odds, one possible explanation for why there are no others like us is because it is so hard to survive in our position.
What keeps us motivated to work diligently is the knowledge that the survival of Operation X is absolutely imperative, because our mission is relevant to society. We believe that we are making a significant contribution to humanity, and that is why we have been prepared to dedicate our love, energy, time and hard-earned financial resources to this cause.
While we know that it may help if readers can visualise exactly how they are contributing, let me provide a list of items and services that donations can help us purchase:
- Study materials (e.g., dictionaries, grammars, language courses, philological & linguistic works)
- Shipping costs incurred by sending rare books to other Operation X contributors
- Travel costs incurred for meetings with last speakers of minority languages (often living in remote areas)
- WordPress subscription fees
- Domain renewal fees
- Access to scientific papers
- Operation X business cards
- Book production costs
- ISBNs for books published by Operation X
- Electronic devices used for language documentation
Operation X is preparing to publish books related to minority languages: language adventures, language courses, grammars, dictionaries, readers. Donations can help us cover the production costs of these works. We hope to make many works freely available to the public, because we believe in the principle of making materials freely available in minority languages as much as possible whilst this will do much good for their promotion. There are upcoming publications this year, but we cannot reveal too much right now; we still want to keep it a surprise. We will announce the publications on the blog when the time is right.
We have spent thousands and thousands of Euros on books and travel costs since 2016. We have tried to minimise our costs as much as possible, but we simply cannot avoid theses costs. Furthermore, when we wish to buy study materials, book sellers usually charge higher prices because books written in minority languages are rare commodities.
We do, nevertheless, not let this discourage us and we try to purchase these rare books for the cheapest prices we can find on the entire internet, which does, however, take up lots of our valuable time as we need to do a lot of research to find reasonably priced books. It is our goal to build the largest library of books for the small languages that Operation X supports.
We are diligently collecting all works in small languages under our care as our library needs to be the largest for such small languages whilst this helps us carry out our work much more effectively; it is our practical wish to have access to all materials ever written in those small languages so that we can include this information in our research. The fuller the picture we get of the language, the better our description of the language can be. We care about the tiny details, as these are often very fascinating and such knowledge should not be lost.
Operation X is the only organisation that has ever adopted all Frisian languages. The unique approach of Operation X is to adopt to an entire language family by learning to speak and write each and every living constituent language so that all living languages of the family may be used for communication by the organisation. That is why the entire Frisian language family is under the care of Operation X. We intend to do the same with other language groups or language families in the future. All that we need for achieving our Operation X objectives is your active support!
Support Our Work
If you want to help keeping Operation X alive, please donate.
Every amount makes a difference.