Over the years at Boaz we've learned that in order to work well with our clients and offer the best support we can, we need to work with skilled, experienced interpreters. When we first started out, we didn't have funding to pay for interpreters and so we like many, we tended to rely on friends or community volunteers. However we knew this wasn't the best approach.
Over the years we've been able to include budget for interpreting costs in some of our grant applications and thanks to our friends at Freedom From Torture here in Manchester, we've been able to tap into a fantastic network of trained and experienced interpreters. Some of our staff have also received training in how to work with interpreters, which has been invaluable. We currently have a pool of around 12 interpreters who we regularly work with, who between them offer a wide range of languages such as Amharic, Dari, Lingala, Oromo, Farsi, Somali, Arabic and many more.
Earlier this year, we were invited to take part in an event hosted jointly by GMCVO and the University of Manchester. The event was entitled Translation, Interpreting and the Charity Sector: responding to linguistic and cultural diversity in service provision.
Lydia, one of our refugee support workers and Intisar, a former Boaz client who now works as a professional interpreter for the NHS and other services, were able to share their experiences of working together and supporting Boaz clients so they are able to communicate effectively to express their needs and desires and to access appropriate support.
You can read more about the event in a special blog here.