Yesterday, GALA posted a blog article about a new project that is being undertaken by Translators Without Borders (TWB) and the Common Sense Advisory (CSA). The purpose of the project is to study the  relationship between the lack of available translations and the disparities in available information in Africa.

This lack of information shows up in critical areas. For example, health information is not reaching people effectively. This means people are unable to get accurate information about HIV, other STDs, and a whole host of additional health-related issues. Also, people are not able to fully participate in their political process because they cannot understand content that is being given to them.

Clearly, the fact that there are over 1,000 languages in Africa creates a huge challenge to translation efforts. And clearly, without having information in their native language, it is almost impossible for the people in Africa to understand information that is provided.

As I’ve written before, TWB is an organization doing very important work all over the world. I am happy to see them teaming up with the CSA to create this study. The CSA conducts research about translation issues all over the world. I am also impressed that the CSA is doing this work in kind and will be publishing the results free of charge on their website. I look forward to seeing the results and finding out what I can do to help. How ’bout you?

Val Swisher
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