All posts by Kseniya

World Refugee Day in 2022

Can you imagine that you need to leave your home, your country, and flee to another? And it wasn’t your choice. Every minute 20 people undergo this awful experience and become refugees.

It is very important to support refugees. But how we can do that if we even don’t know about them? Today the topic of refugees is more spread and visible in daily news due to the war in Ukraine. Russian invasion highlighted lots of world problems and the problem of refugees is among them.

The concept of seeking a place to save a life dates back as far back as Ancient Egypt was. But the international efforts to protect refugees started only at the beginning of the 20th century. The High Commission for Refugees was founded by the League of Nations in 1921. Again it was intended to help people escape the Russian Revolution.

During the past century, people have fled terror and oppression all over the world, from such countries as Armenia and Germany, Spain and Turkey. In recent years many refugees were displaced from Afghanistan, Somalia, South Sudan, and Syria. At the end of 2021, there were 70 million displaced people all over the world, and now this number increases enormously.

The ultimate goal for refugees is to return to their home country when it is safe for them to do it. Unfortunately, often it is impossible for years. Meanwhile, refugees aim to integrate into their host nation. Frequently, people, who leave their native country don’t know foreign languages. So their adaptation process becomes even more complex.

It is a simple practice when refugees use language services. Moving to another country people often need translation services. They need to translate their documents, and application forms. Moreover, lots of countries require personal presence to apply for refugee status in special organizations. and this is the case when refugee needs interpretation services. Nowadays, it is a great opportunity to get different interpreting services. The refugee can choose the onsite interpretation, so the interpreter will be next to him, or Over-the-Phone interpretation, so the refugee will receive interpreting services in any place he needs.

The integration process in a new country is difficult and lengthy. The basic needs: food and shelter are covered the first of all. At these locations, volunteers work, and often they know the native language of refugees or are bilingual. Such practice for interpreters and translators is a priceless experience, considering what a great job they are doing. After refugees are accommodated, social and cultural integration starts. It depends on the mental and physical state of the refugee, so the process can also be long and not so easy.

Interpreters and translators at Homeland Language Services have huge experience in working with such sensitive situations. They all worked with clients on social issues, the healthcare and insurance sphere, and career-building. Moreover, they can be a confidential helper during the legal processes too.

Language specialists together with social and medical workers, volunteers, and government officers like no one else know the painful issues for refugees and can advise them partially.

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Tips for interpreters: exercises to improve short-term memory

Memory exercises should simulate the interpretation as best as possible since the intention of these exercises is to improve memory for interpreting purposes. However, this kind of exercise should not involve bilingual activities, since these lead to different problems that the mind tends to focus on. It is highly recommended that the exercises be done alternately in both of the interpreter’s languages.

 

Exercise 1: shadowing

The exercise of shadowing involves repeating what the speaker says, word for word, in the same language. For this exercise, the texts used should be relatively small but may increase gradually in size. If you work alone, record a text or use a speech on the television or radio. If you work in a group, one may read the text while the other repeats it.

 

Exercise 2: vizualisation

There are speeches that invoke visualization naturally and the interpreter should be able to identify them and use visualization to retain and recall them. For example, court interpreters often have to interpret descriptions that were described by a witness (a place, a suspect, etc.). These descriptions are ideal for the use of visualization to improve memory. Images should be visualized step by step and in sequential order, helping the interpreter recreate a whole scene.

 

Exercise 3: listening

Attentive listening requires identifying a speaker’s key points. You should be capable of listening to a short narrative or a descriptive text and answering the key questions “Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?”. In this exercise, any descriptive or narrative texts may be used and you may record the text if you’re practicing alone, or you may ask a colleague to read it if working in a group.

 

Exercise 4: segmentation

This exercise is based on the concept that it is easier to retain a number of limited chunks with information than just one or two larger dense chunks. Segmentation involves breaking a larger chunk of information into two or smaller ones. This exercise can be performed using both oral and written texts. You should be able to read the sentence only once and, then, segment it. The texts should contain long sentences and dense information.

These exercises can be used by Over-the-Phone interpreters, Video Remote interpreters, and Onsite interpreters. This is a great way to keep fit the professional skills of a language expert.

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How is the process of immigration to the USA bound by language services?

In January 2022, the total immigrant population in the USA hit 46,6 million people according to the Census Bureau’s monthly Current Population Survey. It is the highest number ever in the history of America. Despite the Covid-19 travel restrictions, the foreign-born population rebounded dramatically after President Biden’s victory. Reasons for that were restarting of visa processing overseas and the surge of illegal immigration at the border. However, the 1,6 million increase over the last year is quite large and significant. 

Whenever we speak about immigrants or foreign-born people, we mean people with native languages different from English. Of course, some of them have learned English at school or University, so they can freely communicate in English and solve their problems. But the majority don’t know English. That’s why there is a huge network of language providers. Homeland Language Services, one of them, provides non-English speaking people comprehensive interpreting and translating services in different spheres of their “new life”. For example, interpreting services are very much needed for legal and social issues (from filling in the form in order to get the Green card to getting food stamps for the family), in healthcare and medical support (from taking out the insurance to visiting the doctor’s appointment). 

Going back to the background of immigration process development, we need to state that the United States of America has been the main country destination for international migrants since 1970. Since then, the number of foreign-born people residing in the country has more than quadrupled – from less than 12 million in 1070 to near 50 million in 2022. This amount is the highest percentage in 112 years – immigrants are 14,2 percent of the total population. 

More than 40 percent of all international migrants worldwide in 2020 (115 million) were born in Asia, with nearly 20 percent primarily originating from six Asian countries including India, China, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Philippines, and Afghanistan. Mexico was the second-largest country of origin, and the Russian Federation was the third. Several other European countries have sizable populations of emigrants, including Ukraine, Poland, the United Kingdom, Romania, and Germany. 

States with the largest increase in the immigrant population from January 2020 to January 2022 are Florida (up 531,000), Virginia (up 268,000), Texas (up 263,000), California (up 212,000), Indiana (up 205,000), Tennessee (up 198,000) and New Jersey (up 183,000). 

Nowadays, it is much easier to access the language needed by means of interpreters and translators. Homeland Language Services has a huge team of professionals who work remotely. We provide interpreting services that can be accessed from any city or state. The foreign-born individual can get the needed social service in his native language with the help of an Over-the-Phone interpreter or attend a telemedical appointment with a doctor with the help of a Video-remote interpreter. These services are affordable and easy to use because the certified interpreter can be in touch at any time and in any place, just a device, like a smartphone or computer, is needed. Our services are available in more than 100 languages.

Furthermore, our company has offices in California, Florida, New York, and Texas states. We can provide onsite interpreting services as well. There are some cases when an interpreter offline is needed for the meeting. Homeland Language Services offers simultaneous and consecutive interpretations. 

Taking into account the current world situation, which has been changing since February 24th, 2022 when Russia started the military invasion in Ukraine, we expect an increase of Ukrainian and Russian-speaking refugees all over the world and in America too. Day after day our sales department searches for new partners to be helpful with language services. At the same time, our interpreters and translators work 24/7 to fulfill the current demand in Over-the-Phone interpretation and translation services. 

 

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The power of language – story of American senator Victoria Spartz

At the very moment, when an ordinary girl from Nosivka (a small town in Ukraine) becomes an American senator and votes for a lend-lease for Ukraine.

In 1999, Victoria Kulheyko was traveling around Ukraine by train and noticed that an American man, named Jason Spartz was trying to order dinner but the waiter did not know English. And nobody else in the train car knew how to speak English. So she offered to help him interpret. Mr. Spartz was very grateful and both exchanged their contact information.

With the years, they both got to know each other better and fell in love. In the year 2,000, Miss Kulheyko became Mrs. Spartz and moved to the U.S.A. 

Her husband’s successful agrarian business received great support from Victoria in accounting and finance. Her talent was noticed and soon, she started teaching at Indiana University.

Victoria became one of the founding members of the Hamilton County, Indiana, Tea Party. She served as the CFO in the Indiana Attorney General’s office and she was also an adjunct faculty member at the Kelley School of Business in Indianapolis.

In June 2019 Victoria announced her candidacy for Indiana’s 5th congressional district. And to everyone’s surprise, she won the Republican primary elections on June 2, 2020. Her candidacy for the Senate was supported by 187,000 Americans.

This is how, from a simple dialogue with a foreigner, Victoria Spartz became an extraordinary foreigner leader and an example to many people. 

“I look forward to contributing to the United States’ beacon of freedom and hope for people around the world, and to promoting the free market and the rule of law in countries suffering from corruption and oppression. My warmest wishes to Ukrainians!” – this is the phrase Victoria said during one of her first speeches in the Senate.

The time has come. The lend-lease act was signed on May 9th, 2022. This is the start of a new era in the Russo-Ukrainian War when Ukraine is able to get great support to save and restore the country’s sovereignty.

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Homeland Language Services has been recently certified in the State of New York as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business (SDVOB) program

We are pleased to announce that Homeland Language Services has been recently certified in the State of New York as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business (SDVOB) program.

This Act promotes and encourages the participation of Service-Disable Veteran-Owned Businesses in the State’s public procurement of public works, commodities, services, and technology to promote and advance economic development in New York State.

Homeland Language Services can serve the public sector of the state with comprehensive interpreting and translating services. We are looking for a greater role in the State’s economy by increasing our participation in the State’s contracting opportunities.

“We are very excited about this new certification. Our company already has the experience working with the public sector in many states, building trust & credibility among our clients. We are ready to position Homeland Languages Services as one of the most dependable and cost-effective Interpreting & Translating services across the State,” – Ernesto Lanazca, COO & Co-founder of Homeland Language Services.

For over 6 years Homeland Language Services has been a reliable partner of language services. Our interpreters and translators work for the most important industries in the country, including medical and healthcare providers, government and legal services, and social and educational organizations.

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Better Speech and Language Month – what you should know about our company

5% of people all over the world experience hearing loss, and another 5% have speech problems. Communication is very important to our lives.

Better Speech and Language Month was set out to raise awareness of issues surrounding communication problems, such as an inability to hear properly or speak effectively.

Homeland Language Services provides different types of services. Among them, you can find American Sign Language Interpretation and Video Remote Interpretation. These types of language services help people with speech and hearing problems. They get the possibility to communicate and solve their medical or social issues. 

The main role of a sign language interpreter is to create effective communication between deaf people and individuals who can hear. The interpretation requires fluency in two or more languages, and the ability to focus on what is being shown and said professional and ethical conduct. Interpreters from Homeland Language Services serve all the parties during the communication. Due to their work deaf and hard hearing, people can feel like meaningful members of society. 

Video Remote Interpretation makes life easier for limited-English speakers and the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing because they can see their correspondent and feel heard. Video interpretation has more advantages than over-the-phone services when individual contact is vital. The visual presence of all parties makes the conversation trustworthy, easy, and clear. VRI replaced the work of the interpreter on-site. During the coronavirus crisis, it is vital to be safe and decrease the number of social contacts. That’s why we always suggest our clients use Video Remote Interpreting.

Interpreters in Homeland Language Services are HIPAA compliant and work in more than 100 languages. 

This month is held for over nine decades to make people think about their hearing and speech. Our language specialists are always ready to help people with hearing and speaking problems. But we want to share the signs which indicate them:

  • You need to ask people to repeat what they said;
  • You need to turn your ear towards a sound to hear it clearly;
  • You need to look directly at the person to understand he;
  • You can hear clearly the group conversation;
  • You listen to TV or music at a high volume;
  • You have a pain or a ringing in your ears. 

Be attentive to your health and stay aware of different signals from your body. 

 

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Happy English Language Day

English Language Day is a must-have celebration for all interpreters and translators in the world.
From the very beginning, it was a quiet language on a small cluster of islands off the coast of Western Europe. It developed and spread all over the world during its’ history. It brings together everyone for trade and communication and serves as a second language in almost every nation. English has become the official language of nearly 60 countries.

Our colleague Milena Colombo, HR Talent Acquisition Specialist at Homeland Language Services, shared with us some interesting facts about her love story with English, the goal of our company and about the unique English word 😉

Watch this video together with us and find out what Milena told us.
If you want to know more about history of English Language Day, continue reading!

History Of English Language Day

The first mentions of the English Language were in the medieval England. The modern name of language derived from the Angles. The Angles were a West Germanic tribe that found its way to England, taking their name from the Anglia peninsula. English language has been taken on grammar, tones, and words from every language it has come into contact with.

English language became so powerful that it is now the Lingua France of the entire world. 

The interesting fact, English also stands as one of the most complicated languages to learn as a second language (it stands with Japanese toe to toe). 

What interesting facts do you know about English language?

 

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Stories of volunteers in Homeland Language Services

Volunteers selflessly benefit the lives of others. The people, who volunteer, make the world a better place. Volunteer Recognition Day acknowledges the beauty of this phenomenon. Every day there is a place for help. You can help other people, animals, and nature. 

We are proud to share stories of Homeland Language Services’ employees who volunteer and try to make this world better. 

“From February 24th lots of people in my country, Ukraine, became volunteers. So did I. I helped our army and volunteering organizations with money from the start of the war, which was initiated by Russia. I don’t count how I helped my family in occupied Chernihiv, because it is my family. I had to help them with evacuation, electric generator, money, and medications. Moreover, in the city where I live, Dnipro, I help the shelter for refugees with clothes. During the war, I made lots of free translations of documents. Just because I can. 

Each Ukrainian person, who has enough power and mental strength to do something in such a situation, tries to help with useful information, money, clothes, food, and drugs. During the war, we see an unbelievable amount of volunteers and volunteering organizations. Lots of them are working under the fire, a lot of them were killed and injured… Nowadays, volunteers are the second heroes after militaries,” – Kseniya Tarasova, Homeland Language Services. 

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“I volunteered with Amnesty International in Bangkok. I set up a program for refugee children to get scholarships at international schools in Thailand. Children from Myanmar, Eritrea, Congo and other countries where they came from as refugees could study at schools completely free because of the project that we started,” – Kirill Konin, Homeland Language Services. 

“I am a volunteer translator for a Foundation in my home country Venezuela called Fundacion Madre Maria Luisa Casar. It is a school for 400 children located in a high-risk area of Caracas called Petare. They provide education, nutrition, and health services for the children and their families, as well as to the community where they are located. As a volunteer, I am in charge of translating their monthly newsletters for the Global Giving fundraising platform, as this is their main source of funding. This project is very dear to me and it is a blessing to be able to contribute,” – Gabriela Salas, Homeland Language Services. 

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“I had a kind of volunteering experience in Africa. I was there for around 10 days in 2020 (January). I saw how kids living in really poor areas are involved in education with unsuccessful methodologies, unfortunately, and the lack of organization, which is hugely afflicting locals. 

I was with my Kenyan friend, Betty, and on that particular occasion, she could explain to me a bit more about the habits of the community as well as the diseases that kids or adults are subjected to seasonally. We tried to run our own NGO that was aimed to build a school in the area of Kilifi, but then, the virus came and we had to stop running it. 

We are planning, however, to start it again soon! :)” – Sara Mazzuoli, Homeland Language Services. 

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“I’m so glad to hear there are so many of us (volunteers) and the number keeps on growing.  

I’ve been a volunteer for over a decade in a local NGO helping people after mental crises and those diagnosed with severe mental illnesses. It’s worth mentioning that the city I live in, Szczecin, is one of the biggest cities in Poland. Yet my organization is just a drop in the ocean of needs. However, thanks to volunteers and municipal support we celebrated the 17th anniversary this year and ain’t gonna stop.

I teach English in this NGO and give overall language support. Now and then I also act as a tour guide or a cleaning lady. My point is that there is always something to be done and everyone has skills to share, ever the slightest support matters. So it’s worth sharing your time, even an hour weekly to help. 

There is great power if people act together and every little help counts. Plus those who are being helped are mostly great teachers we learn from the big time,” – Małgorzata Gajda, Homeland Language Services.

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Happy Chinese Language Day!

Let’s celebrate Chinese Language Day by trying to learn Chinese! Our Chinese-English interpreter Karl Tsoi will help you with that 🙂

More than one billion people speak Chinese as their first language — it is more than any other population! The first time Chinese Language Day was celebrated in 2010.

So, let’s learn how to say “thank you” in Cantonese and Mandarin with Karl right now:

 

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What is the Over-the-Phone Interpretation?

Over-the-Phone interpretation or OPI is a three-way call interpreting service. The interpreter works during the conversation between two parties who speak different languages. The biggest benefit of this service is that it can be provided remotely. 

Homeland Language Services is one of the fastest-growing private Interpreting companies in the United States of America with more than 500 interpreters. A big number of specialists in this team are over-the-phone interpreters. That is the reason why we are talking about them here today. 

What is Over-the-Phone interpretation used for?

Due to globalization, country boundaries took a step backwards and communication superseded them. The communication stepped on the first one. People need to communicate with each other even if they don’t speak the same language. This can happen due to different reasons: immigration, relocation, international activity, or business. Lots of countries are becoming multicultural every day and this process needs new solutions. And one of such solutions is Over-the-Phone interpreting services. 

Nowadays, they are used mostly in the medical and healthcare field, in legal and government, in educational and in social industries. Less English Proficiency (LEP) people need to get the services and the organization is interested in adequately providing the required aid. To overcome the language barrier, they are searching for reliable language services providers. By gaining such a partnership, you get the interpreting services on your fingerprints. There is no reason to wait for a language expert, to accommodate him and pay for all travel expenses and the job itself. Clients are getting their interpreters on the phone at any time, at any location in the world.

That’s why OPI is vital for emergencies like when there is an accident, a crime, or difficult medical situations with people speaking other languages than English. There are lots of cases when fast and comprehensive interpretation saves a person’s life.

Who is an Over-the-Phone interpreter?

The interpreter, who provides OPI service, works with consecutive interpretation. He is connected to the call with the help of a special software (VoIP or Skype for Business, for example) on his computer or laptop. Each interpreter is equipped with a good headset with noise cancellation, stable internet, and paper for note-taking. The interpreter in Homeland Language Services works for two parties: one of them speaks English and the second one – a foreign language. The main role of a language specialist is to listen carefully to speaker 1 and transfer messages to speaker 2 in the appropriate language and vice versa. 

There are two types of accessing to OPI: automated and Operator-led. 

The automated one uses an Interactive voice response application. The application converts the keyed Dual Tone Multi-Frequency data (or just the word) into a request to connect with the needed language interpreter. The system works with unique language combinations that the calling party uses as a code for the request.

The operator-lead type works due to the customer’s relations team. The specialists gather the information from the client or calling party and connect him to the right interpreter. This method is more typical for emergency services when the caller has no idea which language code to use.

People can use the OPI service when both parties are located in different places. Moreover, two parties, speaking different languages, can be in the same room. They just need to call an interpreter and turn on the speakerphone. Such a variant is commonly used in medical facilities: when the doctor and the patient are in one room.

Different industries currently have a high need for professional language experts. Therefore, there is a rise in demand for Over-the-phone interpreters on the market. If you are an interpreter and you have experience, you can try working as an OPI in a language provider agency, such as Homeland Language Services. Our company values each staff member who helps a lot during the onboarding process and provides internal training and the possibility to get new certifications for your career development. Also, the benefit of working with us as OPI is that you can do that from any country in the world because the OPI positions are 100% remote. To know more follow our Career portal

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