The National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) held a training workshop and accreditation testing at Aurukun in June. The NMTI team-Mahesh Radhakrishnan (NMTI Project Officer, Indigenous Interpreting), Co-trainers, Michael Cooke and Gemma Ives, and Linguist David Osgarby-facilitated the workshop and testing.

PLC Linguist, Louise Ashmore, prvided on-the-ground support and assistance with the planning and facilitation of the training workshop and assessments at Aurukun. Ancestral Language Experts Dorothy Pootchemunka, Dawn Koondumbin, Phyllis Yunkaporta and Vera Koomeeta, provided invaluable support as mentors. Assessments of the NMTI Paraprofessional Interpreter test for Wik­Mungkan-English were held from 19-23 June and three participants received accreditation. Details of accredited interpreters will be announced when accreditation certificates have been received.

NMTl’s Project Officer (Indigenous Interpreting) discussed the potential for PLC staff at Aurukun to assist NMTI with training, testing and reaccreditation for interpreters in future collaborations. PLC and accredited interpreters will present at the Aurukun interagency meeting to inform agencies of the accredited interpreters and Ancestral Language Experts who may be available to assist with language support and consultation for different services and organisations in Aurukun.

The increase in requests for translation and interpreting services across agencies has highlighted the need for a coordinated service. The accredited interpreters and Ancestral Language Experts will be pivotal in developing a coordinated interpretation and translation language service at Aurukun. PLC 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. PLC currently struggles to meet demand for translation services, which could represent real employment possibilities for trained speakers.