Wayeyi Translators
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Posted by: Rich Rudowske 12/25/2013 5:58 PM

The weeks seem to be sailing by now and in this particular season there are so many things to do.  I was away from home most of the week.  In my role as LBT Representative to Botswana, I joined with my colleague Eshinee Veith at the Wayeyi Bible Translation Project for their translator selection workshop.  We were joined by translation consultants Dr. Hessel Visser from SIL Netherlands and Rev. Larry Johnson from LBT as well as Rev. Gabriel Tsuaneng, the General Secretary of the Bible Society of Botswana.  24 applications had been made for the two positions.  Eshinee and the Wayeyi Project Advisory Committee, a group of pastors and other leaders from the Wayeyi community, had reduced the number to eight applicants.  These were invited to the workshop.  After a day of introductory translation theory and an introduction to BSB, LBT, and the Wayeyi Advisory Committee, the applicants took tests in English comprehension, Bible knowledge, translation from Tswana language to English, Shiyeyi speaking and comprehension, and translation of a text into Shiyeyi.  They also had to interview with the Advisory Committee completely in Shiyeyi, with myself and the consultants in English, and then joint interviews with consultants, BSB, the committee, and myself.  It was definitely a rigorous process!  In the end two of the candidates consistently separated themselves from the rest of the pack in both their test scores and the impression that they made on the interviewers.  By the end of the day Wednesday we were able to select two candidates.  But the Advisory Committee, the ones who are most sensitive to the ways of doing things in the culture, said that the best way to do things would be to write letters informing each applicant of the decision.  So they actually made everyone go home and come back the next morning!  We outsiders could hardly believe it, but the candidates seemed to roll with it.  Yay for listening to the cultural insiders who are guiding you even if you don't understand it!  In the end, two good candidates were selected to begin translation work at the beginning of June.  LBT has been working with the Yeyi people for nearly 20 years, so it is a privilege to see this important step happen! 

 We will be doing a similar process for the Shekgalagari project very soon.  In the meantime, I have been tasked by the General Secretary of BSB to assist his office by reviewing the Botswana Labour laws and BSB documents to be sure of job descriptions, salary scale, and benefits/tax practices are in compliance with Botswana law.  Quite a challenge, but it is actually in line with work I have done in my past (pre-seminary) career.  One of LBT's core values has to do with transparency and dialogue with our host culture partners.  This work flows from that core value. 

The last two weeks have been quite a bit of travel.  We are all a bit exhausted at the moment me from being gone, Maya from being home managing everything else, and the kids from the combination. Glad to be home for the next week before taking a couple days down in Kang to prepare for translator interviews there.  Thanks for your prayer and support.  Rich & Maya

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Re: 152 Weeks in Botswana - Week 18 - Wayeyi Translators    By Chris Pluger on 6/26/2014 11:19 AM
Congratulations to the Wayeyi team and everyone who participated in the process! Praise God! At the Nsenga project, we also sent all our applicants home at the end of the day. We didn't make them come back, though -- the cultural insiders made the cultural outsider (me!) personally call all of the applicants to inform them that evening, so that the three chosen could come back for further training the next day. Good luck wading through Botswana labor laws! Blessings to all.

Re: Wayeyi Translators    By Mercy Mukana sefo on 6/26/2014 11:19 AM
We highly appreciate the good work you are doing. May God bless

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