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Language diversity is one of Africa’s most essential intellectual treasures. However, by far the majority of the approximately 2,000 languages on the continent are only spoken by small communities. Many of these languages are no longer acquired by children and as a result are destined to vanish.

Launched in November 2012, the Centre for African Language Diversity (CALDi) initiates, encourages and supports primary research into African languages. The principal aim of CALDi is to foster the study, research and documentation of African languages and, in doing so, to promote and actively support the sustainability of linguistic diversity on the African continent. As a priority, CALDi supports the documentation of endangered African languages. CALDi is engaged in the training of students and young scholars from the African continent, facilitating the provision of scholarships at different academic levels. This unique and innovative initiative has both its physical and virtual home at University of Cape Town (UCT).