Richard is helping refugees feel at home

Bringing joy to the faces of new refugees arriving in Darwin is the most rewarding aspect of Richard’s job as a Swahili Interpreter.

Richard regularly visits local hospitals to interpret for new arrivals to the country as part of his role with the Interpreting and Translating Service NT (ITSNT).

“When they do their first initial medical check-up, most of them are just astonished by the level of health care here,” Richard said.

“When you see the joy in their face after the hardship they have been through, they are getting a level of support they were not expecting, they even have someone there speaking Swahili to them.

Welcoming them and making sure they are settling in, that’s my favourite part.”

Landing in Darwin a year ago from Kenya via Perth, Richard’s previous experience as a translator meant he was well-suited to a role with ITSNT.

“When I moved to Darwin I realised there is a demand for interpreting jobs, I thought it was a huge opportunity and I wanted to take it on board,” Richard said.

“The support I get from the department’s interpreting section is so good.”

Richard, whose wife is also an Interpreter with ITSNT, said he loved the variety and flexible hours that came with the role.

“The interpretating is across the board, I’ve been to hospitals, government organisations, cultural events, assisting the MVR with delivering driving tests, and facilitating communications at the police station,” Richard said.

“It makes the job quite interesting when you go to different places because you find different challenges.”

Richard has been working as a Swahili interpreter with ITSNT for a year.
Richard has been working as a Swahili interpreter with ITSNT for a year.

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