Afi Huguette Kreyling // Founder of Miniglotte, speech therapist and teacher
I was born in Togo and as a child, I moved with my family to France and then Germany where I still live. Needless to say that multilingualism and multiculturalism are part of who I am.
When we first moved and just like many immigrant families, my parents had to adapt to their new environment, learn a new language and at the same time go through the doubts and fears of how to raise me and my siblings in a foreign country and how to give us the best opportunities in life. The main questions were: “Should we continue speaking our native language at home?” and “Are we doing them any harm by insisting on keeping our heritage language alive?”.
My story is not unique. I grew up seeing many children with a migration background speaking various languages, but also many others who didn’t. These personal experiences helped me find my calling; from a very young age I knew I wanted to do something for people who struggle to find their way into multilingualism and multiculturalism.
This was confirmed later in life when, as a young adult, I had deeper conversations with people who could have spoken languages like Arabic or Russian but didn’t. For a multitude of reasons, their parents missed the opportunity to raise them multilingually. As a consequence, many of these people feel deprived and isolated from a part of their identity.
My vision is to create a more sensible and wholesome approach to multilingualism. I want to debunk the myths surrounding this topic and empower parents to pass on their native language and heritage by providing them with the needed tools, so they can give their children one of the greatest gifts.
If you’re interested to get in touch with Afi Huguette (she/her) or want to find out more about Miniglotte, check out her Instagram account @miniglotte!