DANBURY, CT, USA – 12 March 2018. This year Translators without Borders honors the winners of the 6th Annual Access to Knowledge Awards – creative, dedicated, and passionate supporters who are at the forefront of opening access to information through language equity.
The Access to Knowledge Awards are presented annually to top contributors supporting the Translators without Borders mission. These award winners are leading the effort to ensure vulnerable people have access to vital knowledge in local languages. These awards are the preeminent honor given by Translators without Borders to those from the humanitarian, development and language sectors working in the field of communications in the right language.
The awards, which honor volunteers, donors, and non-profit partners, are given within six categories: Right to Knowledge Award for a translator or translation company who has translated humanitarian content with Translators without Borders; Excellence Award for an individual who has volunteered ‘above and beyond’ in supporting Translators without Borders; Empowerment Award for an individual or organization who has helped train or mentor new translators; Communicator of the Year for an individual who builds awareness of the need to increase access to knowledge; Humanitarian Communicator for a non-profit that exemplifies increased access to information in the right language; and Donor Award for an individual or organization that has significantly contributed to the financial health of Translators without Borders.
“This year, the Access to Knowledge Awards reflect our commitment to innovation and courage,” says Executive Director Aimee Ansari; “and to finding human-centered solutions to global challenges of language vulnerability.”
Nominations within the six categories came in from around the world, representing communities of the Caribbean, Rohingya, Malagasy, Francophone, and North America, as well as local and international organizations, including The World Health Organization, American Red Cross, and The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
In addition to six winners, a number of honorable mentions were also selected.
The 2018 Translators without Borders Access to Knowledge Awards winners are as follows:
The Right to Knowledge Award
The Rohingya Refugee Response Team: Aminul Haque Tushar, Apala Sengupta, Dipanwita Das, Mahamuda Rahman, Mahay Alam Khan, Nivedita Baroi, Rezwanul Islam, Shakil Bin Mushtaq, Sonia Kutubuddin, Zahiduzzaman Zaman, Ei Ei Saing, Maung Maung Than and Saleem Habibullah
As part of Translators without Borders’ response to the Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh, this group of dedicated volunteers has translated urgent and essential healthcare materials to help refugees living in extremely precarious conditions, with limited access to sanitation or clean water, protect themselves.
Honorable Mention: Faly Rabekoto and Fetra Odilson
When an outbreak of plague hit Madagascar last year, Translators without Borders’ team of Malagasy rapid response translators ensured early responders had prevention messages and materials in their languages so as to better help communities at risk of the disease. The dedication of this team was an indispensable asset to the organization and the people whose lives were saved.
Honorable Mention: Ejila Makangu
Ejila approached the Ebola response for the Democratic Republic of Congo last year with true dedication, contributing translation work for Translators without Borders which was vital and life-saving. Thanks to Ejila’s committed efforts, critical information reached the people that needed it most.
The Excellence Award
Alan has provided outstanding support in helping Translators without Borders meet its mission, especially in his work to make the merger between Translators without Borders and The Rosetta Foundation a success. His dedication of technical expertise and time has meant a smooth transition towards a technically enhanced translation platform that will better serve Translators without Borders’ partners and community of language professionals.
Honorable Mention: John Paul Dantanus
John Paul’s support in the roll-out of a new Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system has contributed greatly to the organization’s successful transition to a CRM culture. Thanks to his expert guidance and skills, Translators without Borders is now better equipped to communicate and connect with volunteers, donors, and partners.
The Empowerment Award
The French Translation Team: Barbara Pissane, Suzanne Assénat, Gladis Audi and Ode Laforge
This team’s mentoring of new French translators has been an invaluable resource in allowing Translators without Borders to significantly increase language capacity and guarantee quality of translation for one of the organization’s most requested language pairs (English to French). They have provided consistent support and been part of many important programs for partners such as The International Organization for Migration, The American Red Cross and Dianova. An impressive team effort generated a donation of over 1.2 million words to the work of Translators without Borders.
Honorable Mention: The eCancer Hindi Team: Ashutosh Mitra, Bhashna Gupta, Monika Saraf and Himanshu Garg
The eCancer Hindi team’s outstanding effort in mentoring, which facilitated the translation of multimedia training materials for the palliative care of cancer patients in India, certainly deserves a special mention. Over a nine month period, the team actively mentored translators working on critical health content while also providing over 270,000 words of translations in Hindi, traditionally a hard-to-source language for Translators without Borders.
The Communicator of the Year Award
A marketing professional, Andrew has committed dedicated and energetic efforts (as well as his beard!) to raise the profile of the work of Translators without Borders, on social media and at industry events. Andrew’s networking and creative skills have been of immense ongoing support, helping to build awareness of Translators without Borders and the need to provide content in the right language.
Honorable Mention: Omar Abou-Samra
Omar is the director of the Preparedness Services and Global Disaster Preparedness Center at The American Red Cross. In 2017, he expanded his advocacy for information in the right language by encouraging the domestic teams at The American Red Cross to work with Translators without Borders on hurricane relief. His advocacy was key in teaching others the importance of language considerations during humanitarian response.
The Humanitarian Communicator Award
This non-profit has tested innovative approaches to information dissemination in the context of the European refugee response, including animations, voice-overs, research, and the use of SD cards and other resources. This has meant that more refugees and migrants, many speaking minority languages, have better access to knowledge and critical information that they can understand and use.
Honorable Mention: The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and The World Health Organization
The responses by The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and The World Health Organization to the Madagascar plague emergency showed an impressive understanding of the importance of communicating with communities in the right language and at the right time when crisis hits. Both organizations showed a commitment to ensuring disease prevention messaging was reaching the people who needed it most by providing materials in local languages.
The Donor Award
In 2017, this Translators without Borders bronze sponsor upgraded its support and provided the translation team with its online Computer-Assisted Translation tool, MateCat. This allowed the organization to greatly improve and enhance the work of the translation community and partners. The team at Translated provided excellent support and advice which made the transition to the new system a success.
Honorable Mention: Multilingual Magazine
The team at MultiLingual Magazine has been exceptional in their efforts to raise awareness of the work of Translators without Borders. At events, in the magazine and on social media, their constant support for the message that information needs to be in the right language has been an important contribution to helping achieve the organization’s mission.
Entries for the 2019 Translators without Borders Access to Knowledge Awards will open in December.
If you share Translators without Borders’ vision and would like to apply as a volunteer translator or non-profit partner, or would like to make a donation in-kind to help bridge the language gap, visit translatorswithoutborders.org.
About Translators without Borders
Translators without Borders envisions a world where knowledge knows no language barriers. The US-based non-profit provides people access to vital knowledge in their language by connecting nonprofit organizations with a community of language professionals, building local language translation capacity, and raising awareness of language barriers. Originally founded in 1993 in France (as Traducteurs sans Frontières), Translators without Borders translates millions of words of life-saving and life-changing information every year. In 2017, the organization merged operations with The Rosetta Foundation, resulting in the enhanced capability to achieve its mission.