Community translation for asylum seekers in Hong Kong

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference abstractpeer-review


This presentation will examine a project of digital storytelling conducted in collaboration with asylum seekers in Hong Kong to tell their personal stories of trauma, migration and self-translation. Over the past decade, Hong Kong has seen increased numbers of new asylum seekers from different ethnic backgrounds fleeing violent conflicts and political persecution in Africa and the Middle East, joining the more traditional asylum seekers from East Asia (Todorova, 2021). In addition, a smaller number of asylum seekers are women who have been made stateless due to human trafficking and gender-based persecution. Currently, according to the Hong Kong Immigration Department, there are about 10,477 outstanding protection claims in the Hong Kong waiting and the process that sometimes lasts for up to a decade (Lau and Gheorghiu, 2018). Yet, little has been done in researching the roles they play and challenges they face. In fact, many of them remain invisible to the ‘majority.’ Asylum seekers make important contributions to numerous sectors in the city, including the cultural and creative industries, but many of them are still regarded as the “inferior Other” and subject to various prejudices (Baig 2012; O’Connor 2018). Amid this rather negative public representation of asylum seekers, many non-governmental organisations have attempted to counter the predominantly de-personalised accounts that rely on community translators. Empathising with the refugee is an essential skill for everyone involved in these processes to maximise the impact (Todorova, 2020).
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jul 2023
Event3rd International Conference on Community Translation, ICCT 2023 - Onlnie & Institute of Applied Linguistics, University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland
Duration: 6 Jul 20238 Jul 2023


Conference3rd International Conference on Community Translation, ICCT 2023
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