The Objective: For two years in a row, Trans-Lang has provided language services for the annual “Equity on the Mall” event in Sacramento, California. Hosted by the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund, “an organization focused on improving the health and well-being of the residents of the San Joaquin Valley,” the Equity on the Mall event brings the communities of the San Joaquin Valley together in Sacramento to advocate for policy and systems changes to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable children and families, and advance racial equity and social justice in the region.
Unique Challenges: This is certainly one of the larger events Trans-Lang provides interpreting for on an ongoing basis. The Equity on the Mall event has a multitude of speakers and an estimated attendance of over 2,000 people. Trans-Lang provides interpreting into Spanish, Hmong and several indigenous languages spoken in various parts of Mexico, including Mixtec and Triqui. Not only is the large number of participants a challenge to accommodate, as hundreds of headset/receivers are required to ensure interpreting for the large number of participants requiring interpreting, but logistically the event takes place in 2 main locations about 2 city blocks apart. Our responsibilities also include providing sound systems and various other interpreting equipment to 12 difference teams of interpreters across 4 languages.
Solutions to problems encountered: Our project management teams work closely with event organizers to make sure all needs are discussed well ahead of the event. Our staff has to be adept at navigating on-site issues such as security check-points at the event, multiple set-up locations, large attendance, and multiple languages. We have also overcome technical challenges such as interpreting from video screens when location changes made it difficult to place our interpreting teams in close proximity to speakers at the event.
Final outcome: The Equity on the Mall event has been a great success. The residents of the San Joaquin Valley are able to advocate for positive changes in their communities and Trans-Lang is present to ensure that no-one in these communities is unable to have their voice heard or is left out of the flow of information.