Alabama's Mental Health Interpreter Training Project

ADD TO FAVORITES
Physical
Virtual

Email Address
Phone
(334) 239-3558 (Video Phone)
Alternate Phone
(334) 353-4703 (Voice)
Organization Description

A (not so) BRIEF HISTORY OF MHIT
Alabama's Mental Health Interpreter Training project has been a quarter of a century in the making. It started as a “what if” rhetorical question that Steve Hamerdinger, then director of the now-defunct Bureau of Deaf Services at the Missouri Department of Mental Health, asked at a staff meeting in 1995. To Wayne Elrod and Jay Wolfe, it wasn’t rhetorical; it was a practical and realistic question. Elrod, who was a staff interpreter for Deaf Services, and Wolfe, who was with the Missouri Commission for the Deaf, took the idea and developed a one-day training that became the forerunner of today's MHIT. That early effort established some characteristics that have become hallmarks of MHIT. There was considerable focus, even back then, on knowledge vs. signing skill, per se. The underlying principle then, as now, was that interpreters working in mental health settings had to be very competent general interpreters before they approached a highly specialized area like mental health. MHIT would never be about “how do you sign…” It would be about helping interpreters broaden their knowledge of mental illness and treatment so that they would be able to make more effective interpretations.

Updated: October 30, 2023

Login or register a new account to claim this resource.