One of the benefits of working in the translation industry is that you get to speak different languages and meet different people from around the world. Learning a new language opens up many doors and opportunities, including making new friends from different cultures.
People working in translation are usually very positive about meeting different people, and hearing their ideas and stories. A great translator is a person who feels connected to multiple cultures, languages and ways of thinking, and is positive about belonging to the world as a whole, not just their own country.
There are many ways to make friends from different cultures, even if you only speak one language. Even if you do not have the time to learn another language yourself, you may be able to make friends who are learning your own language as a second language. They may love to spend time talking to you and learning about your life, because this will give them the opportunity to practise their new language skills.
Make Friends Online
New friends can be made from all around the world, by finding them online. Try joining one of the many penpal sites that gather people together who are looking for culturally diverse friends. You have the opportunity to write to other people from any country in the world – either online through e-mail and messaging, or via snail mail. You may even develop such a strong relationship with your penpal that you choose to meet up with them face-to-face in the future. You can have real life friends from anywhere in the world.
Join Cultural Groups in Your Community
If you are open to making friends from different cultures and linguistic backgrounds, look for social groups in your community that promote cultural diversity. You might find them through charities, local governments, churches or adult education groups. Through these you may make new friends, but also learn new languages, learn how to cook meals from different cuisines, or make arts and crafts from different traditions.
Participate In an Exchange
Cultural exchanges are very common and they are available through schools and workplaces. They may involve you spending time overseas in another country, or hosting an exchange participant in your own home. You may choose to provide rent and board for someone from another culture, so they can learn about how you live, and you can learn about their life in their own country.
Making new friends from different cultures can be very rewarding, because you can broaden your ideas and ways of thinking. You can learn new skills and gain new knowledge, and feel empathy for people who live in a different place to you, but who are still part of the one human race. To make friends, start by looking around in your own community, talking to people when you travel aboard, and using the Internet to find friends who want to be friends with you too.