Australia has recently seen a number of Kurdish refugees and immigrants settle in Australia, but there is often confusion about who the Kurds are, and their relation to the countries in which they reside – mainly Turkey, Iraq and Iran. Most are Islamic, but one distinct group which largely speak Kurdish Kurmanji – the Yazidi (Ezidi) – are not.
The Kurdish language is also not one language, but has several distinct varieties which may cause confusion, particularly when organising language services.
A panel of practising Kurdish interpreters and a language specialist will look at the distinct cultural and linguistic features of this group, and how service providers can best meet their needs.
Background to Kurdish immigration to Australia
Cultural variation among Kurdish populations
The varieties of Kurdish language
Implications of linguistic diversity for language services
Users of language services and all service providers who have contact with Kurdish clients.
The varieties of the Kurdish language and the correct identification of language and interpreting needs of this population.
Familiarity with the cultural, religious and social variations in the Kurdish population
Be able to more appropriately identify languages and respond to the needs of Kurdish clients
Dr Uldis Ozolins is a well-known teacher, researcher and writer on Interpreting & Translation with an international reputation. He has taught at several Australian universities, most recently at Western Sydney University where he was head of the languages and I&T area for several years. Uldis has conducted numerous professional development and training seminars for various organisations including All Graduates; was one of the authors of the Code of Ethics for AUSIT, the national professional association for I&T in Australia; and has participated in the restructuring of the NAATI testing regime. With a background in social sciences and politics, he advises on language service policy and is keen to develop cultural and linguistic awareness among service providers and the wider community.
Dr Uldis Ozolins, with assistance from Kurdish interpreters Shirin Badpa, Dr Shorsh Ahmad and Shabboo Shariati.
Shirin Badpa and Shaboo Shariati are practising interpreters in Melbourne; Dr Shorsh Ahmad is a leading Kurdish educator and former Principal
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