Building A Better Asia: Deaf Dialogue

Building A Better Asia: Deaf Dialogue header image 3

Event3: Contributions from the Deaf Community

Building a Better Asia:

Contributions from the Deaf Community(14-17/6/2011)

I’d like to welcome you all and thank you for coming to Deaf Dialogue 2011; with this as our third Deaf Dialogue meeting, we are excited to continue to build upon the successes of our previous meetings.  Deaf Dialogue was originally conceived as a means of bringing deaf leaders together from all over Asia and, through constructive discussion, equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to create positive change for the Deaf in their home countries.

The first Deaf Dialogue meeting, held in December 2009,  focused on giving participants the leadership skills necessary in mobilizing their communities and overcoming the obstacles one faces when trying to create significant change in society.  Over the course of the second Deaf Dialogue meeting, held in August 2010, participants discussed the current situations for the Deaf in their home countries, such as the difficulties they face as a minority group and furthermore, which of these problems are most urgently in need of repair.

Now, for the third and final segment in this series of Deaf Dialogue meetings, participants will work together to develop a concrete plan of action, which will serve to guide participants in taking their initial steps towards bringing about positive change in their home communities. As a group of Deaf individuals who have come together from a diverse array of ethnic and cultural backgrounds, there is much we can learn from each other about how to best face the challenges that we are confronted with as members of culturally and linguistically complex societies. By continuing to work together and benefit from each others’ unique perspectives, we can help lead the way towards a brighter future of greater equality for the Deaf and, together, “building a better Asia”.

Due to the development of broadcasting network and internet in Asia, Asian Deaf can have access to information of other countries such as the neighboring countries. The Deaf world is going through globalization and Asian Deaf can become acquainted with Deaf from neighboring countries

Yet there are dangers in the flux of information since one may make decisions based on the wrong information. Therefore skills such as analyzing the information, checking for the authenticity of the information and discussing productively are crucial. We hope that all of you can become leaders in your country so you can support and guide the Deaf to select the correct information and use them efficiently.

Finally we would like to express our sincere gratitude to Chinese University of Hong Kong and The Nippon Foundation. We also greatly appreciate the tremendous support and cooperation of the members of Advisory Committee and Organization Committee.

The facilitators for the event include:

(a) Mr. Ichiro Miyamoto is Director of WFD RSA/P, a Board Member of the Japanese Federation of the Deaf, and the President of the Tokyo Federation of the Deaf.

(b) Mr. Nickson O. Kakiri is Chair of the Kenya National Association of the Deaf (KNAD).

(c)  Mr. Tomas Hedberg works at the  Sweden Association of the Deaf.

(d) Mr. James Woodward is an Honorary Adjunct Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Modern Languages and Co-Director of the Centre for Sign Linguistics and Deaf Studies at CUHK.