Helping U.N. Reach 100 Million Kids by Translating Global Goals

In September representatives from around the world will gather at the United Nations to ratify a list of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); essentially a global "to-do" list: "No Hunger," "No Poverty," "Clean Drinking Water," "Gender Equality." 

“Comics are a kind of universal visual language for communicating important concepts. Translation By Design is one of our heroes. Donating their services ensures the global goals are translated into the 11 languages spoken by more than half of the world’s population.” - Josh Elder, Founder of Reading with Pictures and Comics Ambassador for the U.S. State Department

I was drawn to support this project because of its ambitious global goals and its focus on educating and empowering young people. Children need to know and believe they have the power to make a difference. These comics have the power to shape their actions today, which will impact the planet for decades.

The comics will be released as part of The World’s Largest Lesson and Project Everyone which seeks to educate every person on the planet about the SDGs when they are ratified in September. Reading With Pictures has a Kickstarter campaign, active through tomorrow, seeking to raise $60,000 to help cover the costs of the first phase of the comics’ production.

This is a mission for humanity, unified goals that resonate with everyone, everywhere.


Sandra DeLay, President and Founder

Translation By Design

Pacific Grove Language Company to Help United Nations Reach 100 Million Children with Translation of Global Goals


Pacific Grove, CA — June 1, 2015 — TranslationBy Design,a provider of language services and cross-cultural awareness training to global companies, announces a partnership with Reading With Pictures to donate translation services for a comic series destined to educate more than 100 million children, in 11 languages, about the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In September representatives from around the world will gather at the United Nations to ratify the list of newly developed goals. The 17 SDG’s focus on solving the world’s biggest challenges and seek to unite humanity behind this “global to-do list” that includes eliminating hunger, no poverty, fair access to education, clean drinking water, gender equality, protecting our oceans, and others. Reading With Pictures and its partners, have organized international teams to write, illustrate and distribute a short educational comic for each of the 17 global goals. The hope is that these comics will reach 100 million young people around the world.

“If the Sustainable Development Goals are met they ensure the health, safety, and future of the planet for everyone on it,” said Sandra DeLay, president and founder of Translation By Design. “I was drawn to support this project because of its ambitious global goals and particularly because of its focus on educating and empowering young people. Children need to know and believe they have the power to make a difference. These comics have the power to shape their actions today which will impact the planet for decades.”

Translation By Design is donating the translation and typesetting of the comics into Chinese, Russian, Arabic, Spanish, and French, the other official languages of the United Nations, plus Japanese, Swahili, Hindi, Malay, and Portuguese. The company joins Dark Horse Comics, Andrews McMeel Universal, Peanuts Inc., and other renown comic writers, artists, and publishers that are contributing to the effort.

“Comics are a kind of universal visual language, one that’s ideal for communicating important concepts to diverse audiences,” added Josh Elder, founder of Reading with Pictures. “Concepts don’t get any more important than the Global Goals, and audiences don’t get any more diverse than the entirety of the human race. For that reason Translation By Design is one of our heroes on this project. Their translation services will ensure the comics are accessible in the languages spoken by more than half of the world’s population.”

The comics will be released as part of The World’s Largest Lesson and Project Everyone which seeks to educate every person on the planet about the SDGs when they are ratified in September. Reading With Pictures has a Kickstarter campaign, active through June 4th, seeking to raise $60,000 to help cover the costs of the first phase of the comics’ production.

“These goals are the most important long term plan we have for our planet. The success of the SDGs is our success; their failure is our failure. Failure cannot be an option. I urge everyone to support this effort either through the Reading With Pictures Kickstarter campaign or by sharing The World’s Largest Lesson website with friends and colleagues.” Ms. DeLay continued, “Monterey is the Language Capital of the World. As we celebrate our 10th anniversary, we couldn’t be more excited to represent our community on the global stage by contributing our expertise to a project that will improve people’s lives and the health of our planet. We will be reaching out to more organizations locally and hope others will join in spreading this important mission for humanity.”



Translation By Design is a global language services provider based in Pacific Grove, California. TBD offers comprehensive language translation services in more than 200 languages along with cultural training programs for a variety of industries. Services include: document and multimedia translation; in-person and over-the-phone interpreters for tour groups, conferences, events, legal matters, and more; conference interpreting equipment and technicians; cross-cultural training services to help global teams and business executives work more effectively across cultures. Translation By Design uniquely places purpose before profit, desiring that their work contribute to understanding, compassion, and the highest human potential. Visit



Reading With Pictures is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that promotes the use comics in education in order to improve learning outcomes for all students. They get comics into schools, and they get schools into comics. (



Carl Magnuson, Translation By Design


Phone: 831-655-9588


Todd Allen, Reading With Pictures


Phone: 773-669-8672

Another Quake Rocks Nepal. Again, Language Matters.

Another quake rocks Nepal. 

Again, language matters.


Translation By Design is a broze level supporter of Translators Without Borders. We are reposting this message from them today detailing some of the organization's work to support the eartquake releif efforts in Nepal. Any support you can give them will improve the lives of people in Nepal and other at risk communities around the world. 


A second significant earthquake yesterday reminded us that Nepal needs our ongoing support.  Please donate now to help Translators without Borders (TWB) provide continued translation and information services.

Following the earthquake in Nepal in late April, TWB once again highlighted that language matters and that communication is aid.

News of the earthquake reached TWB almost as soon as it happened on 25 April. We immediately issued a request for translation volunteers and activated a Rapid Response Team.

That team, comprised of more than 25 professional translators and bilinguals, has been working to ensure that locals affected by the disaster have access to timely, accurate and understandable information.

“Translation really matters," said Andrew Bredenkamp, Chairman of the Board, Translators without Borders. “Aid organizations need to communicate with local people in their native language. In the foothills of Kathmandu and in the surrounding villages, there are many people who do not speak English and it is these people that have been badly affected by the earthquake. The TWB translation team is delivering aid by enabling the flow of critical communications in the native languages of Nepali and Newari.” 

What we've done

In the relatively short time since the earthquake struck, TWB has:

·         translated over 500 terms into Nepali, Newari and Hindi for search and rescue workers and for people monitoring messages coming from the affected populations

·         translated approved and sanctioned Twitter messages which contain crucial information about first aid and protection during and after an earthquake

  • contributed significantly to search and rescue by translating and categorizing local language messages from the affecte population
  • ​translated and distributed a comprehensive First Aid document from English to Nepal

·         translated and distributed ‘after earthquake’ messaging and public service announcements from the Centers for Disease Control

·         monitored local language media, including print, radio and video, and provided transcription of videos to help aid organizations improve response

·         provided translation to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) for their #familylinks program to help find missing persons

·         created a text-to-speech tool for Nepali, specifically designed for first responders

What you can do

There are several ways you can help:

Can you make a donation?

Major crises like the Nepali earthquake strain our already limited budget. In its update on 4 May, the UN Nepal Information Platform noted that risk communication messaging is urgently needed to prevent disease outbreaks.
Please consider donating even a small amount. You can donate here.

Will you sign up for our Biannual Newsletter and Monthly Updates?

We'll keep you up to date all on the crisis, health and education work that TWB does around the globe. Sign up for our newsletter here.

If you are a trained translator, will you join our Workspace?

In the Workspace, we do ongoing translation work for our non-profit partners. We need more Nepali and Newari translators for that work. To sign up, please complete the volunteer form.
Will you promote our work on Twitter?

@TranslatorsWB #TranslationMatters

Cross Cultural Training Supports Life Saving Work in Africa

Peter Fordos, Director of Cross Cultural Training
If you live in Africa and you have to choose between eating food that might be poisoned or your family starves  what choice do you really have?
Aflatoxin is a byproduct of a mold that grows on staple food crops in Africa. It claims more than 26,000 lives each year, causes liver cancer, stunts the growth of tens of thousands of children, poisons livestock and results in African farmers losing more than a half billion dollars of income annually because affected crops cannot be sold.
Eliminating aflatoxin from the food chain is the challenge the team at the Meridian Institute has been tasked to solve in their leadership role at the Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa (PACA).
Meridian enlisted Translation By Design to develop and deliver a cross-cultural training program to prepare their team members to work more effectively with African farmers, government agencies, food storage and distribution companies, and consumers who unknowingly buy contaminated food products.

Training topics included:

- Differences in verbal and non-verbal communication styles 

- How to bring about change in a group/tribe oriented society

- How African cultures view time and how to meet deadlines

- Strategies for cooperation, conflict avoidance and resolution

- And more…

The result was a better-educated team, an efficient ramp-up of in-country operations, and a successful launch of a program that will have a dramatic impact for families in Africa, and humanity. 

We customize every cross-cultural training program to address the unique challenges and goals of our clients. Whether improving the efficiency of a management team in Brazil, or preparing executives for contract negotiations in China. Whether training units of Navy Seals before deployment overseas, or helping an NGO work with native language interpreters in Africa — TBD is driven by a desire to enhance communication and understanding between our clients and the wider world.

Sometimes our work impacts our corporate client’s next quarterly profits, sometimes our work helps a non-profit impact the world for the next quarter century. Improving communication and understanding between cultures is our business, so your business can do more business, globally.



Cross Cultural Training

We love what we do. What can we do for you?


Cross "Canine" Cultural Training - Dogs Understand Human Emotions

Translation By Design mascot Bixby (twin brother Quigley not shown) dons a new scarf from his favorite store,  Bananna Republic. 


Translation By Design helps businesses and organizations do a better job understanding and communicating with people from other cultures. Communication is two way and is verbal and non-verbal. We help facilitate verbal communication via writen translation and in-person or over-the-phone interpreting. We help facilitate non-verbal communnication via our customized cross cultural training programs that help you understand the behaviorial and cultural nuances of individuals that have different cultural backgrounds than you do. 

Gestures, posture, eye contact, speaking proximity, facial expressions can all have different meanings in different parts of the world. These are some of the things we teach in our Cross Cultural Training programs.

So when we read this article from the Smithsonian Magazine about dogs understanding the meaning of facial expressions we had to share it! 

We wonder if there might be interest out there for Cross "Canine" Cultural Training... The nearby town of Carmel By The Sea would be a perfect test market, LOL!



TBD's New Video Promoting Cross-Cultural Training

When working in an ever globalizing society cross-cultural differences can create barriers both internally, between members of your teams from different countries, and externally, between your company and customers from different cultures. Translation By Design offers customized Cross-Cultural Training programs to help businesses and organizations work better internationally. Cross-Cultural Training saves you time and money by helping to minimize breakdowns in communication, avoid business blunders, and costly cultural misunderstandings. 

Visit, call 831-655-9588, or email to discuss your particular intercultural challenges.


Language, Understanding, Respect and Tears

A hearing impaired individual encounters many of the same communication frustrations that a hearing person encounters in an area of the world where people speak a different language. In this touching video, created by Samsung Turkey, you'll see what happens when an entire neighborhood learns how to communicate in another language, sign language.

The respect people feel when they are spoken to in their language is beautifully,and tearfully, evident in this video as a hearing impared man goes about his morning routine with his sister (who is in on the surprise). 

When you speak to a person in their language it fosters a sense understanding, mutual respect, trust, and friendship. If you are in the business of communicating, motivating, educating, or selling to people that speak a different language than you, how much better might your business be if you had a more complete understanding of them and they had a more complete understanding of you?

We can help your business or organization build better customer relationships with language translation and cross-cultural training.

New TBD Ad for Legal Secretary Magazine


Soon to be seen in The Legal Secretary magazine...this full-page ad promoting Translation By Design as the language services partner of choice for legal professionals.

The Legal Secretary magazine is the trade publication for more than 40 local chapters of Legal Secretaries Inc. LSI is the parent organization, founded in 1940, for the 40+ legal professional association chapters around California. 

This ad will appear in the next quarterly issue to be released in May.

Translation By Design at San Francisco Legal Professionals Association Elections Night

Translation By Design provided a complimentary wine tasting at the San Francisco Legal Professionals Association meeting held at Holland & Knight on Thursday, March 12th. The organization was gathered to elect their officers for the 2015-2016 fiscal year. Congratulations are in order to everyone who was elected including Larry McGrew of First Legal Network for his election as the group's new president. 

For more than a decade TBD has been a go-to resource for law firms, lawyers and legal professionals when they require court certified interpreters for depositions and legal document translation. We are pleased to support groups like SFLPA as they serve the continuing education, networking and sense of community for legal professionals.

We selected wine made by our friend and local boutique producer Joyce Vineyards. We poured pinot noir, syrah, chardonay, and rosé. 

Language Helps a Community in Crisis

Seaside Police Chief Vicki Myers address a community meeting with the help of a Spanish Interpreter from Translation By Design

Photo Credit - Monterey County Herald, Seaside Police Chief Vicki Myers addresses a community meeting with the help of a Spanish Interpreter from Translation By Design

In the first 11 days of 2015 the city of Seaside, CA was the scene of 5 shootings. This followed two homicides from shootings in November and December.

The normally peaceful city of 33,000 residents, just a few miles from our office and the idyllic communities of Carmel and Pebble Beach, was left reeling. Community members clamored for answers from the city and law enforcement.

“What is happening to our town?”

“What are you going to do to stop this violence?”

“What can we do as a community to help?"

The Chief of Police and the Mayor scheduled a town hall meeting immediately to address the spate of recent violence. They offered suggestions to help reverse the influx of drug and gang related activity that had descended upon their town.

The only barrier left was language.  

A third of the residents speak Spanish at home. If there was hope for a community-based solution the city officials would need to communicate with those families.

They would need to speak to the hearts of the entire community.

TBD was called to provide a Simultaneous Spanish interpreter for the presentation and audience Q&A session that followed. The 300+ English and Spanish speakers that crowded into the community center left with a greater sense of connection and a shared mission to tackle this problem together.

That would not have been possible without our Spanish interpreter, proving again the truth in what Nelson Mandela said, “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, it goes to his head, but if you talk to him in his language, it goes to his heart.” Then change is possible!

This is why we’re passionate about what we do. No matter if we are interpreting at a community meeting in Seaside or at a high-stakes deposition in New York, whether our team in Taiwan is translating a financial report or we are consulting with a Silicon Valley start-up to take their app to Europe, every assignment is equally important.

We get to help your message reach the hearts of important communities, customers and colleagues!

Thank you for the opportunity to do that work.


- The TBD Team

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