Ngac Thuy Han Do was recently recognised for her dedication in ensuring that the local Vietnamese community has access to essential information and services. Thuy is a member of our Multicultural NSW Language Services Vietnamese Interpreters team. We spoke to her about the inspiration for becoming an interpreter and what motivates her to continue to serve the community so passionately.
Ngac Thuy Han Do started her career in language services as a translator in Vietnam. She would translate magazines and other publications from English to Vietnamese, specialising in topics such as education, culture and health.
In 2008, she came to Australia to look after her elderly parents. While settling into her new country, she was interviewed at the Consulate and needed to use an interpreter herself. That was the moment where she decided she would work to become an interpreter.
In 2012 Thuy obtained NAATI certification as an interpreter, working on topics such as health, education and community services.
Two years ago, Thuy joined the Multicultural NSW Language Services Panel, working in NSW Courts, Police and schools. “I’m grateful to work for Multicultural NSW. The jobs I get are great, there’s a big diversity in the type of assignments and this has allowed me to expand my areas of specialisation and build my profile as interpreter.”
When asked about what she enjoys the most about being an interpreter, Thuy mentions the flexibility of the job, the opportunities for travel and the learnings from communicating with people from different backgrounds.
“I feel that through facilitating understanding and communication, I am encouraging people to speak for themselves. Having the confidence to express yourself is beautiful. And for those who struggle with English, being a facilitator to provide that confidence is one of the things I most enjoy of my job,” she says.
Working in the community
Thuy is passionate about her work in the community. She is a disability advocate, supporting people to overcome barriers. She is convinced that respectful and inclusive language lead to positive change. She also volunteers at the Vietnamese Women Association, a not for profit that offers support to domestic violence victims, assists with information about access to services and organises social activities. She is currently the Vice president of this association, and project manages some events they organise for special dates.
Building a career in language services
For someone who is considering starting a career in interpreting or translating, Thuy would absolutely recommend going for it. Apart from the official qualifications and certifications, she thinks the most important attribute to be successful is to work with passion and dedication for making a difference in people’s lives.
Thuy is humble about being recognised with the Premier’s Language Services Medal. She says there are others out there who are doing a really good job and also deserve recognition.
She has a message for all language services professionals: “Regardless of your position or experience level, your commitment and dedication to contributing to community are your best qualifications.”
Congratulations on your amazing achievement Thuy!