"If your God is so mighty, why doesn't He speak my language?"
A Cakchiquel (Guatemala) man to SIL founder William Cameron Townsend
Effective since July 1st 2012, Cameron HAMM is the new linguistics department head for SIL Cameroon.
Cameron is a native of Canada and has been serving with SIL Cameroon since 1999.
He is assigned to the Ndop cluster of languages in the North West region, with a particular emphasis on Bafanji (ISO 639-3 code [bfj], also known as Chufie’). Cameron has published a phonological sketch (2007) and a description of the noun class system (2011) of this language.
His work has expanded to facilitating linguistics training and mentoring in several other languages spoken on the Ndop Plain.
Prior to joining the Ndop cluster team, Cameron served as a sociolinguistic survey specialist for SIL both in Cameroon and in Chad.
In 2008 he earned a Master of Applied Linguistics and Exegesis from Trinity Western Seminary in Langley, British Columbia, Canada.
His goals for the department are:
- Strengthening consultant development - making sure there are an adequate number of linguistics consultants to take the place of retiring consultants.
- Ensuring field teams receive consultant help.
- Ensuring consultant well-being - being an advocate for consultants to ensure they are not over-worked and can enjoy their work.
- Archiving of linguistics research - ensuring that newly published linguistic research is accessible on the SIL web site.
- Library acquisitions - enhancing our library collections (in Yaounde, Maroua, and Bamenda) with new publications to assist field workers and other library users.
His research interests are in phonology, morphology, and comparative and historical linguistics.
Cameron is married to Valerie and is the father of three children. He will be resident in Bamenda.
SIL believes that all languages are worthy of preservation in written form by means of grammars, dictionaries, and written texts. This is why we want to make sure we protect this heritage with quality consultant checks.