December 24, 2017

English-only health alert for Ngukurr, now with draft Kriol translation (cos there really should be one)

If a government body wants to tell a community of 1000 people to boil water before drinking it because of health concerns, and pretty much everyone in the community speaks the same Language Other Than English (LOTE), why would you issue the alert only in bureaucratic/dense/formal English?


The community being alerted here is chock full of Kriol speakers. If you want to communicate with them, doing it only in formal English is only going to get you so far. While NT Health and Power and Water are serving the community well in terms of their warning, the language it is communicated in is lacking. It's kinda like a cinema screening a movie onto the curtains, instead of projecting it onto a flat screen.

To be fair, translation services for Indigenous languages are really lacking in the NT. There is no government agency to go to. Getting a quick turn around on translations is probably near-impossible. (See also last year's Kriol signage debacle I discussed here). But government could have long-term strategies and lead by example. With better acknowledgement that delivering information in constituents first languages is important, they could work to create a better Indigenous language translation industry in the NT.

In lieu of zero Kriol translation being provided for the current, rather important, 'alert', I thought I'd have a go at translating it myself, in case it's of use to someone... but I certainly wouldn't want to promote the idea further that translations should be handed out free-of-charge. Caution: the following translation is unchecked and unofficial. I am not a qualified Kriol-English translator (although I do have qualifications and experience in interpreting i.e. oral translations).

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Guyu! Stori bla boilim wada la Ropa!

21 Disemba 2017

Didei, NT Gabmen (det Helth Depatment en Pawa en Wada) dalimbat Ropamob bla maindim det wada weya im gamat burrum tep. Pawa en Wada mob bin switjimoba det wada. Im nomo gamat from bo na. Im gaman burru riba na, dumaji Ropamob bin yusumbat tu matj wada. Bat det riba wada im maidi nomo brabili klin wada.

Pawa en Wada trai sotimatbat na so im gin gubek la bo wada, maitbi afta Krismis. Bat bifo im gubek la bo wada Ropamob garra maindim det wada weya im gamat burru tep, dumaji im riba wada.

Det Helth Dipatment wandi Ropamob bla boilim det tep wada bifo yu:
  • dringgim
  • yusum wada ba kukum enijing
  • brashim tuth
O najawei, yu gin baiyim wada burrum shop.

Dijan woning im oni antil Pawa en Wada tjeinjimbek yumob wada la bo wada. Mela garra jandim natha stori wen yumob wada gubek la bo wada.

Bunjum yu wari ba enijing ba dis problem, yu gin kol la Helth Dipatment wen im oupin.  Det namba im 1800 095 646.

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