New interpretive program at Family Service of Roanoke Valley thrives

By Patricia Martellotti - Reporter

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Family Service of Roanoke Valley has started a new Health and Wellness Interpreters program to help victims of domestic violence who don't speak English.

The program, which started with only a few families six months ago, has since grown to helpĀ more than 30 who speak a number of different languages.

"It helps refugees that come to the United States, much like my family did, having equal access to public information, and to be heard is truly the ingredient of communication in any culture," said Baraka Kasongo, a refugee.

"When they move to Roanoke, they don't speak English, we can make them feel comfortable, that they get the service they need," says chief development officer, Ruth Cassell, of Family Service of Roanoke Valley.

The Health and Wellness Interpretive program was created through a $260,000 grant from the Department of Criminal Justice.

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