Training and accreditation opportunities are required for First Nations language experts in all areas of ancestral language work. First Nations language professionals are needed in areas such as teaching, translation, production of written materials and language nest leadership as well as in academic and applied linguistics. Developing employment and training pathways for ancestral language experts is a central part of Pama Language Centre’s ancestral language recording, revival, revitalisation and maintenance agenda.
The National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) held a training workshop and accreditation testing at Aurukun 12.06.17 –23.06.17. The NAATI team; Mahesh Radhakrishnan, NAATI Project Officer (Indigenous Interpreting), Co-trainers Michael Cooke and Gemma Ives and linguist David Osgarby facilitated the workshop and testing (12.06.17 – 16.06.17).
Pama Language Centre Linguist Louise Ashmore provided on the ground support and assistance with the planning and facilitation of the training workshop and assessments at Aurukun. ALEs Dorothy Pootchemunka, Dawn Koondumbin, Phyllis Yunkaporta and Vera Koomeeta provided invaluable support as mentors. Assessments of the NAATI Paraprofessional Interpreter test for Wik-Mungkan-English were held 19–23rd June and three participants received accreditation. Details of accredited interpreters will be announced when accreditation certificates have been received.
Pama Language Centre will continue to support members of speech communities to gain skills that will enable our teams to respond fully to employment opportunities in translation and interpretation. Pama Language Centre currently struggles to meet demand for translation services which could represent real employment possibilities for trained speakers.