Speaking their language: Empowering interpreters and translators in diverse regional communities

Launched in Shepparton today, the Interpreting Mentoring and Professional Advanc
Launched in Shepparton today, the Interpreting Mentoring and Professional Advancement Regional Opportunities (IMPARO) project report and online toolkit were developed in partnership with Wise Well Women - a community organisation supporting refugee and migrant women’s health in Goulburn Valley - and with support from the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).
In an Australian first, Monash researchers have worked with non-professional interpreters and translators (NPITs) in regional Victoria to identify current training challenges and co-develop a digital toolkit to better support their communities.

Newly arrived or linguistically diverse communities often rely heavily on NPITs from within their ranks for daily interactions, assistance with access to The proposed training model focuses on capacity building and mentoring to support accessibility and sustainability. To this end, emphasis is placed on fostering local collaboration and mentorship, and creating readily accessible digital resources for NPITs to use.

NAATI Senior Operations Manager Ms Francesca Cimarelli said the IMPARO project provided valuable and actionable insights to help develop language and interpretation skills training programs where they are most urgently needed.

"We understand the value of professional interpreters and translators around Australia, particularly in regional areas where they are sometimes difficult to access. We believe the IMPARO project will positively contribute to addressing this need," Ms Cimarelli said.

As a precursor to tailored training courses that will be developed in the near future for NPITs who wish to meet the eligibility requirements to sit the NAATI Certified Provisional Interpreter or the NAATI Certified Translator test, or apply for NAATI Recognised Practising credentials, the IMPARO online toolkit has been created as a platform to share information about ethical practices in translation and interpreting, and resources for ongoing professional development.

Registered Nurse and NPIT Mrs Bushra Samadi said: "The workshops and the project have helped to give our voices more meaning and we are eager to acquire professional skills that can be utilised in our workplaces, enabling us to build stronger bridges between our communities and the outside world."
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