Netherlands Society of Interpreters and Translators (NGTV)
The NGTV was set up under the name of Netherlands Society of Translators in 1956 as a professional organization for translators and interpreters. In January 2001 the name was changed to NGTV, the Netherlands Society of Interpreters and Translators (Nederlands Genootschap van Tolken en Vertalers).
The objective of the NGTV is:
To promote the ethical and material interests of translators and interpreters in general, and of Dutch translators and interpreters and those established in the Netherlands in particular; to promote proper understanding of the role of translators and interpreters; to strengthen international contacts in the area of translating and interpreting.
Currently the Society has over 1,600 members working in a total of some 70 languages, either as interpreters, translators or both.
The Administrative Board of the NGTV currently consists of seven members: the Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and four other members with the portfolios Legal Matters, Support Services, New Members and Professionalization. The Society has an Interpreters' Division, consisting of three sections (Court Interpreters, Consecutive Interpreters and Conference Interpreters). There are two sections primarily for translators, the Scientific-Technical and the Literary Sections; each of these is responsible for the daily management of its own affairs and for the activities it organizes. The interpreters' sections as well as the scientific-technical and the literary sections have their own boards.
The activities of all bodies within the NGTV (administrative board, section boards, committees, local and regional groups) are carried out on a voluntary basis by members of the Society with the support of the Secretariat, which carries out all routine secretarial activities. Financial matters are in the hands of a financial administrator. In addition, the NGTV uses the services of external experts such as an IT professional, a graphic designer, and a copywriter.
Apart from monthly board meetings, the Administrative Board also convenes a General Meeting twice a year. The interpreters' sections have their own General Meetings that are held annually.
The NGTV works with a number of committees which are active in a variety of areas. These include the Regionalization Committee, the Translators' Admissions Committee, the Interpreters' Admissions Committee, the Admissions Appeals Committee, the Committee for International Contacts, and the Helpdesk for Starters. There is an arbitration committee for disputes and a committee for disciplinary matters.
The admissions committees are responsible for the admission of interpreters and translators. In both cases, admission is subject to strict criteria. Each of the three interpreters' sections has formulated its own admission criteria.
NGTV members are kept informed of developments within the Society through the NGTV newsletter. Published monthly and for internal use only, the newsletter contains information such as announcements of NGTV activities, e.g. meetings, conferences and workshops. The various committees and local and regional groups also regularly publish information on meetings. Besides the newsletter, the NGTV also publishes a quarterly journal, Linguaan, to update members on general issues concerning the profession of translation and interpreting. Both publications are free of charge for members; non-members may subscribe to the quarterly.
Individual members can meet one another at the local and regional meetings. There are currently 10 regional and two language-related (Polish and Turkish) groups. NGTV members automatically become members of a regional group. Each group organizes meetings on a regular basis – often on a specific theme. Meetings are also held mainly for the purpose of establishing and maintaining contacts between fellow translators. Networking is after all very important in our profession.
As a professional organization, the NGTV organizes a number of activities on a yearly basis which are accessible to all members and which relate to a specific aspect of the profession. These take the form of workshops or seminars and are organized by the various sections. In 2001 for example, the literary section organized a presentation about translating children's books, and the scientific-technical section conducted a workshop on the subject of translation tools. Sessions are also held for new translators, to address the problems they are likely to encounter early in their career.
The NGTV also provides a number of support services for its members: a debt collection service, legal advice and assistance and the option of ordering special paper for sworn translations.
The Society is affiliated to a number of organizations. These are SNEVT (a national foundation examination board for translators and interpreters), Raad voor het Vrije Beroep (Council of Liberal Professions) and MetaCom (Dutch Federation for Multilingual Communication). The NGTV is a member of the international umbrella organization for the profession, Fédération Internationale des Traducteurs (www.fit-ift.org)