Sally Guilloux-Cooke, Oregen Guilloux-Cooke
We create digital animated stories on a range of important community messages, which are not specific to cultural background, language or literacy level. Increasingly Australia is receiving new arrivals from areas of the world where language is oral based so translations are not possible. Our products are able to be understood regardless of literacy or language. The product we developed is called LLULAS (Low Literacy Universal Language Animated Stories) Universal Communication. As well as communicating important community information, LLULAS Universal Communication, aims to increase awareness and acceptance of the diversity that exits in the workplace and in our everyday lives on many levels and to celebrate the contribution that diversity brings in all its shapes and forms. All our products are rigorously tested with our target audience to ensure they are culturally sensitive, inclusive and comprehensible across the widest possible audience demographic. We aim to contribute to greater understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity, safety and social cohesion in our society.
Through our unique digital communication products we aim to contribute to the awareness and appreciation of diversity across all communities in Australia and the positive outcomes that it provides. Within our organisation we are culturally and linguistically diverse. Our products are aimed at celebrating diversity across many sectors of the community and creating greater acceptance of its the contribution to the workplace and society as a whole. Diversity to us covers the widest spectrum, culturally and linguistically, gender and disability.
We draw on extensive social action design research to ensure that the diverse community we work with contribute actively to the development of the products we produce. This involves continually testing and retesting, which incorporates the communities understanding and also participation in how the products are designed so that we meet expectations and also allow for a diverse cultural and linguistic audiences to understand the information we are providing. We also actively encourage our clients to participate in the testing process so they can gain a greater understanding of why we do things the way we do and also to appreciate the contribution our diverse audience makes to the final product. Sometimes getting a client to sign on to making these products can take years. For example we worked with Public Transport Victoria for over three years to convince them of the value of the products. We have just completed our first 3 animations for them on the travelling on public transport around Victoria. This was a very long and involved development process as there were multiple stakeholders including Victoria Police involved in the approval process. We were able to involve most of these stakeholders in the testing process so they could understand how many of the different employees such as Protective Service Officers were perceived by Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) audiences and how they understood their role within PTV. This type of feedback is not only invaluable to the development of the animation but to the organisation itself. These animations are the first of their kind for PTV and the response in the short time they have been public has been excellent. As the lead consultant in the development Sally Guilloux-Cooke has done extensive academic research in cross cultural, non-verbal communication. She wrote her masters thesis on LLULAS Universal Communication and drew on the extensive research as a data source. She is now working on her PhD at Melbourne University and Reunion Island University researching the Creole Culture of Reunion Island, developing an animation as part of the PhD and a thesis. This culture is of particular interest due to the social cohesion between diverse cultures that exist on the island - a mix of African, Indian, French and Chinese. This research will be invaluable to the on-going LLULAS product development as well as to discussions and studies on social cohesion in our increasingly globalised cultures .
As far as we are aware, we are the only organisation offering this product and the approach to design and research not only in Australia but in the world. Our unique Low Literacy Universal Language Animated Stories LLULAS Universal Communication product was developed to address the need to communicate important messages and information in an accessible manner regardless of cultural or linguistic background. This also includes those with low or no literacy levels in any language. Our challenge was to convince organisations, in particular government, of the validity and importance of our work. Initially the product was considered too innovative, because it was a move away from traditional translations of text. But once we were able to take the client into the testing room and on the journey of developing the product, they saw for themselves how the target audience understood and interpreted the graphics. They then started to acknowledge and understand the importance and value of the product and the role they play across diverse audiences. Our first major series of LLULAS Universal Communication products were produced for all the consumer protection agencies around Australia. NSW Fair Trading was the lead organisation on the project. In 2013 we produced 6 animations in 7 languages on consumer law. The success of this series across Australia has lead to numerous more language versions being delivered including a book of the static images being produced and given to new arrivals as part of a welcome pack to help raise understanding of consumer law in Australia. This project also involved extensive community engagement to ensure we could use authentic stories from the target audience as well as an understanding of which communities were most at risk of unethical behaviour by traders. This work was invaluable in producing animations that were authentic and resonated with the audience. The success of this series laid the foundations for other national organisations such as the Fair Work Ombudsman to approach us to deliver a series of animations on work place rights and responsibilities. These have also proven highly successful and we have since produced numerous more language versions as a result. In June 2018 we added four new Pacific Island versions as a result of their success in the market.
Our main clients are government agencies and non government organisations that have a need to communicate important community messages in an effective and engaging manner. When we started eight years ago our product was seen to be too innovative and acceptance to take up the initiative was slow. However, once we had independent testing of the initiative undertaken, which showed an outstanding 84% effectiveness level in terms of communication we were able to show solid evidence to our clients. This was also combined with our rigorous testing process, which incorporates not only our target audience but also our clients participation so we create a transparent and inclusive approach every step of the development process. The fact that our products are based on solid academic and in-field research is a key success factor, particular for government agencies that increasingly look to research to underpin projects.
Our products are consistently increased once they have been released to the market. For example a series of six LLULAS animations developed for all the Consumer Protection Agencies around Australia was produced in 2013, a further set of 10 languages was developed a year later and then a book with the static images produced for new arrivals to Australia due to the extensive take up of the product and its success in the market. A series of six animations for the Fair Work Ombudsman in 2016 has had a further set of over 10 language version requested and in June/July 2018 we produced another 4 language versions for a Pacific Island audience. Due to the success of the product, we were requested by Public Transport Victoria to produce their first ever CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) digital content on how to use myki and use public transport in Victoria. These have just been released in July 2018. The response has been extremly positive within and outside PTV.
Conrad Kotnik | Assistant Director | Education Resources
Fair Work Ombudsman
T 03 9954 2749
M 0499 498 777
F 02 6267 4550
The Fair Work Ombudsman originally requested BeInSync develop a series of six LLULAS animations on numerous aspects of Australian workplace laws to help raise awareness of rights and responsibilities for both workers and employers. The audience was in particular the Culturally and Linguistically Diverse community. Research shows this audience were particularly vulnerable to workplace exploitation. The success of these animations have seen multiple new language version be added to the set over the past two years. As a result of the success of the animations BeInSync is also working with Fair Work Ombudsman, on the first-ever visual contract on employee and employer rights in the agricultural industry, which will be released later in 2018.
Public Transport Victoria
Acting Manager, Digital Channels
Telephone +61 3 9027 4742
Mobile +61 437 274 357
Public Transport Victoria wanted to produce 3 animations on using the myki system and travelling around Victoria using public transport. They wanted CALD communities in particular to access the animations to better understand and use the system and to feel comfortable that everyone across Victoria is welcome. We also wanted to show the cultural diversity that exists across PTV as an organisation. Three animations were launched in July 2018. For PTV this was the first time they had addressed this audience using digital platforms as a dissemination point. The response so far has been excellent.
As with the development of all our products extensive testing was conducted within the target audience, in participation with the client and their stakeholders, to ensure that each animation was on message and that cultural sensitivities had been addressed.
Our unique products are contributing across Australia to raising awareness of the diversity that exists in the workplace and in our society and the benefits that diversity bring. Our products are also about celebrating diversity and how it can lead to greater social cohesion. We are often given direct feedback from our audience that express pride in their particular cultural group represented within the animations. From our extensive research we know that we need to portray the characters in a non-specific manner for example 'Asian' characters are not distinctive of any particular region, however the character is seen come from this area of the world. We are also careful to use non-distinctive Voice Overs so that audiences can understand the voice however there is no distinctive accent. The extensive research we conduct is the reason our products are so successful in the marketplace as the outcome is driven by the audience itself. Our clients are also encouraged to participate in the testing so that we create a collaborative and transparent process.
I believe the strength of our process is our key achievement in creating highly succesful, original, innovative and inclusive products. The process not only makes highly effective products and promotes inclusiveness it also contributes to our clients understanding of the value of diversity and how much diverse audiences contribute to creating much richer understanding across a variety of cultural and linguistic groups. Our solid research methods contribute to creating a solid product, which combines creativity and simplicity with academic data and knowledge. Our products also have made an impact on increasing awareness across a range of important community issues as well as contributing to greater social cohesion. The more people are aware of their rights and responsibilities the more they are able to participate in society and with greater confidence. Our products contribute to empowering often the most disadvantaged members of our society by raising awareness across a range of areas such as law and safety.
Our diverse community of new arrivals; migrants, assylum seekers and refugees who contribute so generously and enthusiastically to the development of LLULAS Universal Communication products never cease to amaze and inspire us at BeInSync. They provide such extraordinary insights into the images and animatics that provide us with invaluable material to make our products easily understood by the widest possible audience as well as resonate on a personal level. I also highly appreciate AMES Australia in the work they do. They have always been very supportive of BeInSync and allow us to test with their amazing students over many years. They encourage and support diversity and provide leadership in this area.