Announcing Boostlingo’s First Annual Season of Giving Language Access Grants
It’s rare that I actually get to announce something here at Boostlingo, so I can’t tell you how happy I am to announce our very first Season of Giving Language Access Grants!
We’re offering the chance for five organizations to win 1,000 free minutes of interpreting in 2023. Boostlingo provides on-demand, virtual interpretation with the help of 13,000 interpreters for over 300 languages all over the world. The winners will have access to our platform to use their minutes connecting via phone or video to the language support they need.
Why are we running a Season of Giving for community interpreting minutes?
I spent most of my early career working in nonprofit organizations, so I’ve seen firsthand that a patchwork of volunteers can fall short of reaching out to the community you want to help.
In Texas, you can pretty much throw a rock and hit a Spanish speaker, but as the immigrant and refugee population has changed, organizations are more often looking for speakers for languages like Haitian and Arabic. Relying on volunteers for this support can drain the few native speakers you have in your volunteer pool and is technically not providing professional interpretation.
While something is better than nothing, many organizations have realized that being bilingual is not the same as being an interpreter. Interpreters are trained in specific vocabulary sets, in how to be a neutral third party, how to handle the emotional toll of interpretation and more.
Simply sticking an untrained bilingual volunteer into every situation may not be a sustainable or fair option depending on your nonprofit’s mission. Our Training Specialist, Katharine Allen, has a really great article on what it means to be a qualified interpreter where she goes into detail on what training is required to be an interpreter.
And yet, budgets are budgets, and in the nonprofit world, those budgets are often limited. So in comes the Season of Giving. We’ve found that virtual interpretation is a huge budget saver and a great middle ground for nonprofit organizations looking to keep costs down while still staying in touch with their communities. For five organizations, we’re making that cost even lower.
What’s Boostlingo’s mission?
Boostlingo is reimagining interpretation through innovative technology that improves global communication and increases language access.
We want to bring interpretation into space where this service was previously considered cost prohibitive or where procurement of certain languages was impossible. In rural areas around the world, in communities like that of your nonprofit, and anywhere there is an internet connection, we are expanding the reach of language support to help those who need it most.
Who can apply for community interpreting grants?
Any nonprofit, non-political organization may apply between December 5th, 2022, and January 5th, 2023. In the US, this means your organization will only be considered if you’re registered as a 501(c)(3). International organizations will be considered if they are not registered as political organizations in their headquarters’ country.
All applicants are required to submit an essay of 500 words or more explaining your organization’s mission, the languages you’re planning to service with these minutes, and any new initiatives that will be made possible by this contract.
All applications will be carefully reviewed by our committee, and we expect to announce our winners by the end of January.
To learn more and apply, you can head to boostlingo.com/seasonofgiving.