Mentor-Apprentice Program


The Mentor-Apprentice Program is a way of learning an Indigenous language where a fluent speaker of the language (a mentor) teaches a committed language learner (an apprentice) by doing everyday activities using only their Indigenous language.

The program aims to increase apprentices' ability to understand and speak their language by “living life in the language.” 

The pair must agree to spend a lot of time together, usually about 7-10 hours per week during the program. Mentor-apprentice pairs complete 200 hours of language immersion over approximately nine months starting in May. Pairs must submit regular reporting logs demonstrating their Indigenous language learning.

Pairs are paid for their time in the program with funding from the Government of the Northwest Territories and their Indigenous Government. Ten pairs from each Indigenous Government will be selected to participate.

Training is provided for:

  • Dene Kǝdǝ́
  • Dëne Sųłıné
  • Dene Zhatıé
  • Dinjii Zhu’ Ginjik
  • Inuinnaqtun
  • Inuvialuktun
  • nēhiyawēwin
  • Tłı̨chǫ


The deadline for applications is February.


  • Any adult 18 years of age or older.

Priority will be given to:

  • Indigenous applicants who live in the Northwest Territories.
  • Applicants who commit to sharing their language with others upon completing the program. This includes teachers, child care workers, parents, or those actively engaged in language programming in their community.

How to apply

Mentor-Apprentice pairs must apply together.

  1. Complete the application and prepare your supporting documents.
  2. Submit your completed application before the deadline to