FLS’s interpreters say that working for families through the Alabama Department of Human Resources (DHR) has become a passion and a true calling. This is especially true when disasters happen.
After the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill in April 2010, the fishing community of Bayou La Batrie, AL, and other citizens of south Mobile County were predominantly out of work until the Gulf of Mexico could be cleaned up. Alabama’s governor and the Department of Human Resources came to the rescue by issuing food stamps to any family needing it whose jobs were in limbo. FLS provided Vietnamese interpreters onsite in Bayou La Batrie for four months, serving 248 individuals in Khmer, Laotian, and Vietnamese.
In the spring of 2011, tornadoes hit 19 counties in central Alabama, killing many, and destroying houses and businesses. FLS’s interpreters provided lifelines to these families in 19 Alabama counties, including those needing American Sign Language. Food stamps were offered and FLS’s Spanish interpreters manned food stamp distribution centers for two weeks.
Since 2008, FLS has proudly provided interpreters on a daily basis to most of the 67 counties in Alabama. Our interpreters assist with food stamps, family assistance, and child support, providing crucial communications among the families, DHR, and the court system. One interpreter remarked, “I would not trade this job for anything… I know that I make a difference in the lives of many.”