The Liberian Translation and Literacy Organization (LIBTRALO) – an offspring of The Institute for Liberian Languages (TILL), was formalized and launched as a non-political, non-governmental and non-profit organization in Monrovia, Liberia on September 29, 1995. We have the mandate to do translation, literacy, linguistic research and orthography development so as to provide the opportunity for all Liberians to learn to read and write in their mother-tongue languages and encourage scripture use.
LIBTRALO became twenty-two years old on September 29, 2017 as a language NGO. We consider this joyous occasion an act of praise to God Almighty for sustaining this forward march with translation, literacy and scripture use activities since the formative days of the organization till now. The anniversary celebration, though low-key, met all LIBTRALO staff well and actively functioning. We sang hymns in praise to God for His marvelous goodness to us over the years.
Later, we listened to an exhortation by Rev. William Boen, Executive Director of the Bassa Literacy and Translation Association (BALITA). Rev. Boen spoke from the Book of Ezekiel 37:1-14 on the thematic question “Can these bones live again?” During his exhortation, he made a comparison of LIBTRALO’s low financial state to the dry bones of the text named above. He admonished LIBTRALO not to lose hope, but to rely on God Almighty in whose hands lies the destiny of the organization. During the conclusion of his twenty-three-minute sermon, Rev. Boen asked all LIBTRALO staff to stand on the tripod of faith, reconciliation and prayer.
Executive Director David K. Setiyee, for his part, did a reflection on LI BTRALO’s journey of twenty-two unbroken years of existence and service to the Liberian people. Mr. Setiyee paid homage to some Liberians and expatriates whose joint efforts and sacrifice brought LIBTRALO to being. Some of those forerunners have passed to the great beyond while others live on. The Executive Director was especially grateful to Lutheran Bible Translators (LBT) for her unwavering financial and moral support to our organization. He encouraged LBT to remain engaged and supportive to LIBTRALO.
PREVIOUS LANDMARK CELEBRATION
The twenty-second anniversary celebration of LIBTRALO’s existence is not the first celebration ever. The biggest celebration of all thus far took place when LIBTRALO became twenty years old on September 29, 2015. The program that brought together many churches and other para-church organizations was held in the auditorium of the Bible Society in Liberia. There we had a great time together listening to beautiful English and indigenous language Gospel renditions and a great sermon by Rev. Oliver Kpan of Life Tabernacle Church, who also made a cash contribution to the organization’s Headquarter Construction Fund Drive. One of the high points of that particular occasion was the certification and gowning of Elder Jaa Ngaima Kawala – Founder/Consultant, Mr. Samuel F. Cooper – Literacy Director, Mr. Albon A. Wannaba – Printer and Mr. David K. Yarkpawolo – Office Attendant, for their long service and work for humanity and the Church.