Banana Link relies upon and greatly values the volunteers who help to support many aspects of our work, and they are integral to fulfilling our aims. Volunteers can either work in the Norwich-based office or from home (or both). Activities our volunteers help out with include:
- Maintaining our websites, social media channels and online newsletters
- Helping to run stalls
- Organising conferences and events
- Undertaking field and desk research.
We also need specialist volunteers to support the work at Banana Link by translating materials between English, French and Spanish - see below.
Our volunteers are valued, and we try to provide them with a fulfulling experience, that among other things, provides:
- an insight into the operation of a non-governmental organisation (NGO)
- a chance to learn about the social and environmental impacts of international trade
- an opportunity to develop both practical and interpersonal skills
Banana Link’s international reach means that we are constantly working with partners in different parts of the world. As well as running a bi-lingual website (English and Spanish), the effectiveness of our work depends on being able to translate documents from and into Spanish and French. We rely almost exclusively on volunteers for this work, which can range from short news articles for our website to longer technical reports and documents.
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer translator for Banana Link, please have a look over the short translation tests below. If you would be interested in helping to translate, you may be asked to undertake a short test.
- Test for translation from English into Spanish and French
- Test for translation from French into Spanish and English
- Test for translation from Spanish into English and French
- Translation volunteer application form
Please follow the link to the guidance documents below. These are used by our translation volunteers to help them with translation work for Banana Link.
Hear from some of our volunteers
"It was a great chance for me to practice translation and I knew the experience would be great for my CV. I passed the translation test and have officially been a volunteer for Banana Link since June.
This job is really convenient for me, and students in general. You can work from home and for as many hours as you want, so there is no need to worry about it taking up too much of your precious time (especially when you have lots of university work). They don't always have texts to translate, but when they do, they send an email to all the translators asking who is able to do it. There is a deadline, but you're usually given a few days, so you never really feel under too much pressure.
I'd worked on literary translation a lot at college and university in France, but the translation of Banana Link is completely different. Literary and technical translation require completely different skills. While you often need to sound poetic and retain the effects of the original texts in literary translation, technical translation is more about getting each word right and remaining as close as possible to the original piece.
So far, I have translated a couple of reports and Power Point presentations for Banana Link, but I’ve struggled a lot with technical terms I’d never translated in English or French before. These words are often about plantations, the legal rights of workers, and laws and organisations that do not always have an official translation in French, or that I simply do not know. To help their translators, Banana Link provide a very long English/French/Spanish glossary with the technical words most commonly used, such as plantation, supply chain, guidelines, World Banana Forum etc. Although most of these terms had been translated to Spanish, there wasn’t much in French. I set myself the task of translating the whole glossary into French during the summer break. It took a lot of time and research but I completed it. It’s been useful for me and will hopefully help other translators as well.