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. Grace Naschtz translated the course into Hebrew and played his part in spreading free learning that has helped save lives.
Grace, tell us a bit about yourself and your background.
I’m Grace (yes, I’m a guy surprise!). I’m a university graduate from Bar-Ilan University in Israel with a BA in Social Sciences. I currently work at an urgent healthcare clinic in Jerusalem, as well as working at a college as a coordinator for the center of learning disabilities.
How did you learn that Alison was looking for translators for its coronavirus course?
I googled courses regarding COVID-19 and I was redirected to the Alison homepage. I saw that there were courses in other languages, including Hebrew, which needed translation.
What was your experience of Alison before volunteering to translate? Had you studied with Alison before?
I had not studied with Alison before but I have heard the name multiple times through American friends, and also on some online platforms for MOOC recommendations.
Why did you offer to translate our coronavirus course?
Honestly, because it’s important and no one else had taken the initiative to do so. I think that a proper education regarding COVID-19 is a basic necessity and all people should educate themselves from a reputable platform before listening to people who may not know what they’re talking about.
Why is it important that everyone has access to important information on coronavirus?
In the end, you are your own judge. I always tell people to understand a topic before making decisions. Learn about COVID-19 before having anxiety or completely disregarding its existence.
Tell us a little about your method when translating.
I like to fully read and understand a section before roughly translating it. Then, after all of it is translated, I go over it again and fix some mistakes or choose better words or synonyms for words that repeat themselves a lot.
Why is free learning so important and why is it important to translate it into many languages?
Because not everyone has access to education. Yes, platforms like YouTube offer many educational programs, but it’s mostly subjective and only available in one language. An education platform that is free and available in many languages makes it so much easier for a person who doesn’t speak English (or any other mainstream language) to get a proper education which will help self-growth.
Have you been learning through Alison during the pandemic? How has the lockdown been for you?
I actually took the COVID-19 course through Alison. Lockdown has been very interesting here in Israel. It only lasted a few weeks and now everything is opened and back to normal (except the alarming numbers of new infections), but mostly it seems like a distant memory, something that some countries are still facing.
What would you say to people who might be interested in translating for Alison?
Do it! You’ll help educate yourself on whatever topic it is you’re translating, as well as improving your translation skills in both languages, and you’ll have an amazing feeling of contribution by the end.
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.