Profile: Groups Team Up To Help Utah County's Spanish-speaking First-time Parents


Profile: Groups Team Up To Help Utah County's Spanish-speaking First-time Parents

Daily Herald - June 26, 2004

A translation company is converting the Welcome Baby manual into Spanish for Utah County's Hispanic first-time parents.

"This is the big step that will bring the Welcome Baby program into homes where Spanish is spoken," said Jen Yorgason, Welcome Baby coordinator.

Welcome Baby, a joint program between United Way of Utah County and the Utah County Health Department, is an in-home education program designed to teach first-time parents the basics of caring for an infant. The program is entirely volunteer-run and focuses and builds on strengths and skills the parents already possess.

"We know many Spanish families who could use Welcome Baby but don't get the visits," Yorgason said. "There are also Spanish-speakers who could volunteer for the visits if they had access to a Spanish handbook."

That's where Buyer's Fund stepped in, a local organization that helps low-income families purchase their first home. It is sponsoring the project with TransPerfect, one of the world's leading translation companies. TransPerfect is donating a large portion of the translation, and plans to complete the hefty handbook by November.

"I was really thrilled with the discount, and also thrilled to pay the balance of the bill," said Leah Madsen, Buyer's Fund director of operations. "This project is worth every penny."

This isn't the first time TransPerfect has donated its services. The company provides free translation services to law firms whose pro bono work requires it.

"We've crafted a translation that uses idioms, phrases and word preferences used by the Hispanic population of Utah County, primarily from Mexican and Puerto Rican backgrounds. Presenting this vital information in a tone that's familiar and accessible is key," said Kristin Wiley, director of business development for TransPerfect.

TransPerfect's skilled linguists combine their knowledge of culture and tradition with the English text to produce a document that "speaks" clearly to new mothers who both live in the United States and draw upon their proud heritage.

"I'm a participant of the Welcome Baby program," said Madsen. "Each month, a trained and experienced volunteer visits my home and helps me become a better parent.

"I was excited that Buyer's Fund could help with this program, because I've enjoyed and benefited from the resources provided to me.

"As our Hispanic population continues to grow, the Welcome Baby program will help with networking and the language barrier," Madsen said. "We all have kids and they all have the same developmental patterns -- all parents face the same challenges."

The Welcome Baby curriculum is centered on topics such as infant development, proper nutrition, safety, discipline and parent-child relationships. Home visitors share infant development information with families and focus on helping new parents provide their baby with a healthy beginning.

About TransPerfect
With revenue of over $250 million, TransPerfect is the largest privately held language services provider in the world. From offices in 66 cities on 5 continents, TransPerfect offers a full range of services in over 100 languages to multinationals worldwide. With a global network of over 4,000 linguists and subject-area specialists, TransPerfect is the largest translation company to be fully ISO 9001:2008 and EN 15038:2006 certified. TransPerfect is headquartered in New York and has regional headquarters in London and Hong Kong. For more information, please visit our website at


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