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International Translation Day is a global observance that highlights the importance of translators in connecting people from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds. It emphasises the role of translation in promoting understanding, tolerance, and dialogue between diverse communities. This day also celebrates the work and achievements of professional translators, who play a crucial role in ensuring that the exchange of knowledge across languages is possible, bridging gaps between various societies.
The observance of International Translation Day was initially proposed by the International Federation of Translators in 1991, which later received the UN's endorsement in 2017. South Africa is a linguistically diverse country, with 11 official languages, making the role of translation even more important for social cohesion, education, and access to information. As such, translators play a vital role in the South African context, enabling the nation to communicate effectively among its diverse population and promoting mutual understanding among its people.
In South Africa, International Translation Day is observed through various activities, including conferences, seminars, and workshops where translators and stakeholders discuss challenges, opportunities, and trends in the field of translation. On this day, professionals and linguistic institutions collaborate to raise awareness about the significance of translation and how it contributes to the country's social, cultural, and economic development. International Translation Day takes place annually on the 30th of September, serving as an opportunity for South Africans to celebrate the valuable work of translators and appreciate their contribution to a more connected, diverse, and thriving society.
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