To help the world combat the Covid-19 pandemic, Alison launched the course Coronavirus – What you need to know. In order to make sure that no one was excluded from accessing possibly life-saving information, Alison committed to translating the course into as many languages as possible. To achieve this ambitious goal, Alison reached out to its community of Learners, seeking volunteers willing to use their language skills to help translate the course and spread important information on coronavirus. Charles Abraham translated the course into Afrikaans and played his part in spreading free learning that has helped save lives.
Charles, tell us a bit about yourself and your background.
My name is Charles Abrahams. I am 58 years old. I am currently working as an assistant teacher and an administrative officer at Grassdale High School in Cape Town. I teach Business Studies to Grades 8 to 12. I worked at this school from 1983 to 1990, left to work in retail until 2007, and then returned. I’m a very dedicated educator and have a passion to educate young people. I am also a tutor in Business Studies.
How did you learn that Alison was looking for translators for its coronavirus course?
I saw in the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic that translations were sought to make information of the virus known to all nations in their mother language. I love translating and I have done several translations from English to Afrikaans. I completed the coronavirus course and I felt I wanted to be part of Alison’s translator team. So I volunteered my services to Alison.
What was your experience of Alison before volunteering to translate? Had you studied with Alison before?
I was introduced to Alison in 2014 or 2015. I did the Diploma in Educational Psychology. I also did several courses to further my skills in education. I will never stop studying with Alison. It just feels good to pass your certificate or diploma. I have even gone back and done revised courses.
Why did you offer to translate our coronavirus course?
The reason for offering to translate is to help people in South African communities to be able to understand know how serious and dangerous this virus is. They need to have the necessary information about COVID19 in their own mother language.
Why is it important that everyone has access to important information on coronavirus?
It is of the utmost importance that everyone has a clear understanding of the severity of this disease. Prevention, keeping safe from contracting the virus, how to stay healthy, how not to infect others, all of this needs to be made clear in every language. We need to flatten the curve by making everyone aware.
Tell us a little about your method when translating.
I love translating to Afrikaans, which is like Dutch. I take every piece that needs to be translated and read it though thoroughly. I identify tenses and sentences structure and find the most appropriate words in Afrikaans. Then I structure the sentences to make sense to the reader.
Why is free learning so important and why is it important to translate it into many languages?
I am part of the educational community and so free learning is important to me. It’s important for everyone to have access to studies. Alison is the only institution that helps the world to get educated. This medium seeks to empower everyone will help people to overcome poverty. The courses and diplomas Alison offers are current. Alison keeps up with the latest developments.
Have you been learning through Alison during the pandemic? How has the lockdown been for you?
I have begun new diploma courses during lockdown and I am so excited about the the fact that I have two diploma courses to keep me busy. We are still in lockdown but my grade 12 learners are back and the other grades will follow, so I need to work hard to complete these courses.
What would you say to people who might be interested in translating for Alison?
I would encourage everyone who is able to translate to join this team. People who translate help people to gain knowledge in their own language. It will enable more people across the globe to study and it will empower them. Knowledge enlightens and knowledge is power. It enables communities and nations to empower themselves.
If you’d like to play your part in overcoming the coronavirus pandemic by helping Alison give people access to the information necessary to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, please get in touch.