In 2015, NaTakallam happened.
Happened, because we identified two critical gaps: a lack of affordable ways to practice Arabic from abroad and an absence of ways for millions of Syrians fleeing war into Lebanon to access a livelihood. We connected some dots, thus planting the seeds for NaTakallam.
Five years later, NaTakallam, a language services platform powered by individuals from displaced and host community backgrounds through the digital economy, is on track to hit its goal of a cumulative disbursement of $1,000,000 USD to its instructors and translators.
They are based in 30+ different countries, speak a combined 20+ languages and dialects, and since 2015, have worked with over 10,000 individuals and organizational clients. Clients include the private sector to NGOs, classrooms of 8-year old children in Kentucky, USA, to humanitarian aid workers in places like Sudan or Bangladesh.
As founders, our backgrounds in humanitarian affairs, human rights, and economic development, helped us identify an opportunity where traditional business leaders may not have seen one. Learning the ways of doing business in this environment has been a steep curve. But today, we better understand the rapidly evolving social entrepreneurship ecosystem. We do believe that social impact and market-based solutions can create beautiful things together. While the sector is still young, developing and complex, one thing consistently stands out: a drive for sustainability.
As we continue to grow, NaTakallam is getting closer to our goal to become independent from external funds and becoming fully self-sustainable. We can do so by continuing to generate revenue from our core activities, selling quality, curated language services. NaTakallam is fortunate to have an opportunity to do this – to leave external funds and donations to those NGOs on the ground doing incredible, needed humanitarian work on the ground that simply cannot become revenue-generating.
At the precipice of NaTakallam’s self-sustainability, we would like to acknowledge the improvements our team has delivered over the years, including:
• A fresh new website – to be launched next month
• Training, upskilling and community building – investing time and money in our refugee and host community instructors and translators to ensure they are well equipped to deliver the highest quality professional services
• An upcoming brand-new user platform – enabling more seamless scheduling, booking, tracking
• Enhanced customer service – we have more hands on deck to answer your needs and troubleshoot any issues more smoothly
• Continuing to serve those in hard to reach areas – notably, Lebanon, whose recent crisis has rendered payment processing and disbursements all the more difficult.
More and more refugees and displaced persons rely on NaTakallam for financial security. As we continue to improve our services to both those we support and those to whom we provide paid services, so too does our commitment to remaining sustainable.
Each translation service we sell contributes directly to refugee livelihoods.
Each classroom we visit fosters empathy and cross-border understandings.
Each language lesson held helps show the role of technology and digital innovation in an otherwise slightly antiquated humanitarian and bureaucratic system.
After careful consideration and to honor our goal towards self-sustainability, we wanted to share that as of November 1st, 2020, pricing for NaTakallam’s conversation session will increase as follows:
• $25 for 1 hour
• $95 for our 5 hour-bundle ($19/session)
• $160 for our 10 hour-bundle ($16/session)
This will have a significant impact on our team’s ability to carry out our mission to improve the lives of thousands more refugees and their host communities while building bridges worldwide.
*If you want to continue benefitting from our current pricing, you can renew your package or buy several in bulk until the end of October 2020. As we want to ensure that our services remain accessible and affordable to non-profit and educational partners, please get in touch with our team directly for customizable group offerings.
Pricing for our Integrated Curriculum, as well as our Academic Programs and Translation and Interpretation services, remain unchanged.
We look forward to continuing to work with you, and thank you for your support and belief in our mission over the years.
With gratitude, love, as well as peace in all languages,
Aline, Reza and the entire NaTakallam team