Helping Community & Faith-Based Organizations Communicate Worldwide
Over the past 20 years, Interlogia’s network of translators has been working with community organizations, religious organizations, and other groups in need of knowledgeable translators. While we have worked with many different types of organizations, our primary clients are Community and Faith-Based organizations.
Interlogia can help you to inform and inspire others with your words as you interact with people across a wide variety of cultural situations. We make sure that you get your point across in ways that feel and sound natural, without sacrificing clarity.
Community-based organizations need to be sure that the materials you use for health education, disaster relief and community development actually convey to the communities you serve the information that is intended. And it must be done in a way that makes sense and is acceptable within that culture.
But that is not easy!
Some of the challenges that community-based organizations face when seeking to communicate effectively include:
- Making sure that an idiom in the training material (like an American story that says someone “chilled out”) is translated so that it communicates the intended meaning and not just the literal words.
- Understanding cultural expectations for how teaching and learning take place. For example, some training materials assume people will ask questions of the trainer, but in many cultures this is considered rude. Therefore, the translation needs to take this into account and the material needs to be adapted accordingly.
- Being sensitive to cultural norms affecting how a particular topic might be received. For example, in business training within a Muslim context, it is important to be sensitive to the questions of loans and interest, since these are handled in Muslim contexts differently than in most western based business training resources currently available.
Interlogia works with organizations and individuals from many different religious backgrounds and convictions: Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Muslim, and others. Because faith-based organizations are focused on peoples’ deepest values and relationships and needs, the message of such organizations and materials is simply too important to rely on word-for-word translations to help people understand the meaning.
Faith-based organizations share many of the same challenges that any community service organization faces, but with the extra complexity of helping men, women and children navigate their worlds within the framework of deeply held spiritual convictions that powerfully affect decisions, motivations, and perspectives.
Words are not enough. Participants in your programs do so because the desires for their lives need to change in some significant, but not always measurable, way. Some of the challenges faith-based organizations face include:
- Many religious books and resources upon which faith based organizations rely for training, education, and personal development, use specialized language or rely on resources developed in other languages and contexts. Therefore, many faith based organizations find that translations and adaptations in more accessible versions and media are crucial.
- The training materials available for faith-based organizations to use have often been developed by secular organizations, and include subtle, and not so subtle, values and ideas that are in tension with the values and ideas of most faith-based organizations. Therefore, true translation and adaptation by those who understand and share in the values and ideas of the faith-based organization is crucial.