You all know how hard it is when you don’t understand a language? A few months ago I was talking to someone I know, he’s French.  I was talking to him about my toothache and the fact that I should go and see the dentist. Immediately my dear Fabien offered to give me the contact of a French dentist. However, his contact’s office was in the center of town, far from where I live. I thanked him, but I was curious to know why he goes so far away when there are so many dentists around? That’s when he reveals to me that it’s very complicated for him to express himself in English. It’s even almost impossible for him to express himself in English! So for his medical care he goes to a Togolese woman’s medical center or he goes to the French dentist office far away. In short, Fabien has no choice of hospitals to get treatment because of the language barrier.

Wasn’t that stressful for him? A few months later I meet Marion full of energy telling me about her organization in Canada and that was like a revelation. Marion and I talked for many hours. Our conversation was very beneficial because Fabien’s story came back to me and I realized how significant the project was, that she described to me. As soon as I got home I started writing a business plan to teach Functional French in medical institutions in order to facilitate communication between medical staff and patients. So, this was one of the first projects of Les Passerelles Globale.

Zahra Belo



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