Media to get insight into the silent world of the deaf

Members of Samoa Deaf Club

By Faaolo Utumapu

APIA: 20 SEPTEMBER 2012: Members of local media agencies are getting a rare insight into the world of people who are deaf, with a two hour special hosted by Senese Inclusive Support Services as part of International Week of the Deaf.

This is one of the activities in preparation for the International Week of the Deaf commemoration for Samoa next week, from the 24th to the 30th of September 2012.

This is an annual event for the deaf community to conduct awareness campaigns about appropriate perspectives of deaf people and to publicize their requests on the key messages they want local and international authorities to address. Their aim is to attract the attention of decision makers, general public, and media to the issues and concerns deaf persons face and to raise awareness that deaf people have equal human rights.

Senese Inclusive Support Services has always had a good relationship with the local media, which we consider valuable to our work of promoting an inclusive environment for children with disabilities in schools and the community.

Coupled with the powerful role of the media in changing attitudes and perceptions, the organisation felt it necessary to give members of the local media a preparatory training to properly introduce them to the issues faced by people who are deaf.

The training covers a range of aspects such as cultural and medical perspectives of deafness, sign language and the convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, and other issues relevant to people who are deaf as sign language, interpreting, and access to education.

The training will be conducted by Caroline Conlon, a Deaf volunteer from Australia who is here to help develop deaf services at Senese Inclusive Support Services.

Caroline has extensive experience teaching capacity building to deaf communities in western Africa and some parts of Asia.

As well as her role as an advocate for people who are deaf, she is also a well respected actor and artistic director for many years, with the Australian Theatre of the Deaf.

She is a sign language consultant for Government and media agencies in Australia and has conducted many visual communication workshops to people of all ages.

Details of the workshop:

Date: Thursday 20 September 2012
Time: 11:00am – 1:00pm
Venue: Training Room, SENESE office, Salanesa Plaza, Moto’otua

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