Interpreting for Refugees in Social Service Encounters


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Guest: Kathleen To, Linguistic Services Manager Swedish Medical Center
Length: 68 minutes
Cost: $15.00 with "Basic" Membership  / Included with "Pro" Membership
Approved CEUs: ATA=1.000, CCHI=1.000, IMIA=0.125, WA-DSHS=0.000, RID=0.100 PS*
*Sign language interpreters requiring RID credit, must CLICK HERE to complete PINRA form BEFORE taking this activity.
Description: From refugee camps to beyond resettlement, this interview with social worker Kathleen To explores psychosocial dynamics of refugees and techniques to assist interpreters in facilitating communication for social service assignments, including tips for working with families in a group encounter. Particular attention is given to the interactions that interpreters for languages of limited diffusion have with their communities outside the interpreting encounter. Terminology for this setting is reviewed and available in the corresponding "Refugees" glossary. At the time this activity was recorded, Kathleen To was the Manager of Linguistic Services at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle. She has managed a Refugee Resettlement & Social Services program in Illinois, taught ESL, and provided family support services to refugee & immigrant families for over twenty-five years. She has trained organization staff in immigration, cultural competency, cross-cultural healthcare & literacy topics. She introduced VRI technology to SMC in 2009 as a modality to increase language access for SMC patients.
  1. To understand the process of refugee resettlement and the services available to refugees.
  2. To recognize the psychosocial factors impacting communication in social service encounters with refugees.
  3. To learn about techniques to handle one's own emotional stressors when interpreting.

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5 thoughts on “Interpreting for Refugees in Social Service Encounters

  1. Another great segment! Excellent content. The quiz was short, though, and all 10 items were answered by the speaker within the first 31 minutes of the training video. It would be great if the quiz asked questions about information presented in the second half of this 68 minute presentation.

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