MOVE: Volunteer Translating

The Multilingual Outreach Volunteer Effort

MOVE LogoWho are we?

When COVID-19 hit our community, many speakers of other languages at UVA and in Charlottesville struggled to access critical relief services like health, unemployment, childcare, and shelter. Tapping into the abundant language resources in our community, MOVE bridges this communication gap and promotes multilingualism at the University and beyond. 

MOVE volunteers are UVA language students and language faculty, heritage speakers, and immigrants, representing 30+ languages. 

What do we do? 

  • Translate information on COVID-relief services, such as housing, health care, jobs, and unemployment funds in the UVA and Charlottesville community. 
  • Interpret COVID relief services in our community via hotlines, community events, and online videos.
  • Some of our recent work:
    • Assisted multilingual families of elementary school students at Charlottesville City Schools.
    • Helped small business owners who speak other languages by creating support videos.
    • Extended mental health resources to speakers of other languages.
    • Communicated new and important pandemic-related information about food benefits.
    • Provided bilingual volunteers for local Latinx-led church food pantry.
    • Monthly "StreetSheets" in multiple languages with comprehensive information on COVID-relief services in the local community. 

What DON’T we do? 

As a volunteer organization:

  • We do not translate medical documents or interpret medical procedures (We leave this to the professionals!).
  • We do not do work outside of the UVA/Greater Charlottesville Community
  • We do not translate excessively long documents!
  • We do not require face-to-face interpreting during this pandemic. While there are some opportunities for masked & socially distanced interpreting, the majority of our opportunities are virtual. Each volunteer decides based on their comfort level. 
  • We do not do professional, paid translating and interpreting. All of our partners understand that we are volunteers and we cannot guarantee error-free translations. 


MOVE In the NewsWhy do we need YOU?

When COVID-19 came to our community, we discovered a serious gap in getting critical emergency relief information to those with limited English and limited access to the Internet. As a multilingual individual, you can help bridge that gap, and your help now is crucial.

Do I have to be bilingual? 

You do not need to have native-level proficiency or be bilingual to participate. Our volunteers have a wide range of translating skills and our translations are done collaboratively. Some people even involve their fluent families! You can always ask others for help. MOVE seeks to help our community with language resources while promoting multilingualism at UVA.

How do I join?

If you are interested in joining us, please fill out this form. Once you have filled out the form, we will contact you with our next translation/interpretation tasks. 

We need more multilingual people!

If you have a friend who might be willing to share their language skills, please forward this request for help. Thank you!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Do you have a question? Take a look at our FAQs below for more information about MOVE.