Discovering Deaf Worlds March 2014 Newsletter, vol. 7, issue 3

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Inside you'll learn about two major Filipino Sign Language bills which have made there way through Congress, hear firsthand from Dr. Shilpa Hanumantha on the USAID funded EXPAND program, and join us in applauding Dr. Liza Martinez of the Philippine Deaf Resource Center for her many years of activism and advocacy.

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<ul><li><p>www.discoveringdeafworlds.org</p><p>March 2014Volume 7, IsSue 3</p><p>A mountain view in Baguio, the Philippines</p></li><li><p>Board MembersPresidentHarold Mowl, Jr., Ph.D. Vice PresidentJames DeCaro, Ph.D. </p><p>TreasurerBryan Hensel</p><p>SecretaryStacey Miller </p><p>Donalda Ammons, Ph.D.Carol-lee AquilineBernard BraggMencie HairstonMarty HillerKhadijat Rashid, Ph.D.Michael Schwartz, Ph.D.Denise Thew, Ph.D.Madan Vasishta, Ph.D.</p><p>StaffExecutive DirectorDavin Searls</p><p>International Programs Director and Co-FounderDavid Justice</p><p>Newsletter ServicesT.S. Writing Serviceswww.tswriting.com</p><p>About DDWDiscovering Deaf Worlds is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the self-determination of signing Deaf com-munities through local capacity building in developing countries. </p><p>DDW recognizes that all people, regardless of their social or econom-ic background, possess the capacity to succeed, and deserve equal ac-cess to education, the workplace, and the benefits that society has to offer. For more information, visit www.discoveringdeafworlds.org.</p><p>Senator Bam Aquino files two bills on Filipino Sign Language!</p><p>Click here to watch a video of Philippine Federation of the Deaf President Rey Alfred A. Lee sharing this exciting news!</p><p>House Bill 2117: An act requiring the use of Filipino Sign Language insets for local news programs, amending for the purpose section 22 of Republic Act no. 7277, as amended, otherwise known as the Magna Carta for Persons with Disabilities.</p><p>House Bill 2118: An act declaring Filipino Sign Language as the National Sign Language of the Filipino Deaf and the official language of government in all transactions involving Deaf people, and mandating its use in schools, broadcast media, and the workplace. </p><p>DDW March 20142</p><p>Donald Galloway Dr. Harold and Mary MowlDr. Gerry &amp; Judy Buckley Dr. Khadijat RashidDr. W. Scot and Sally Atkins Erin Green-Justice</p><p>Marty and Karen Hiller Dr. JMatt and Susan SearlsDr. Ted Supalla Julie Schafer Dr. Brian and Kyle Justice Daniel and Suzann Bugosh</p><p>Special Thanks ...to these extraordinary DDW supporters since the last issue!</p></li><li><p>March 2014 DDW 3</p><p>By Dr. Shilpa Hanumantha </p><p>Last fall I was presented with an extraordinary oppor-tunity to work as a data col-lection program specialist with the EXPAND program, a joint project of DDW, the Philippine Federation of the Deaf, and the U.S. Agency for International Develop-ment (USAID). I was both ex-cited and nervous. This trip would push me out of my comfort zone, working with a team of Deaf Filipinos I had never met before. </p><p>DDWs goal through the USAID-funded EXPAND pro-gram is to work closely with the Philippine Federation of the Deaf (PFD) Sustainability Sub-Committee (SSC) for two years, providing organizational development, process consultation and training to improve the sus-tainability of PFD and its 28 members. DDWs orga-nizational consultant, Scot Atkins, Ed.D., and I were tasked with the momentous responsibility of ensur-ing the success of this phase. Since this phase set the foundation for the whole EXPAND program, I had an-other reason to be nervous. </p><p>Once we landed in Manila, we took a cab to our gorgeous hotel downtown. I was suddenly transported to my childhood hometown of Bangalore, India. The warm weather washed over me, the crowded streets jostled my senses, the Jeepneys (similar to rickshaws in India) provided a cozy cocoon from which to ob-serve the surroundings and the people. The malls and outdoor spaces had people of all ages out and about. This initial encounter with Filipino culture and its peo-ple comforted me knowing that even though this two-week trip was for business, it would also contain a lot of pleasure. </p><p>Meeting the PFD-SSC core team was a great expe-rience, despite the communication and linguistic chal-lenges at the beginning. I was amazed at the close-knit partnership among the Filipino members, their moti-vation and the sheer passion for the common shared goal of improving PFD. I felt right at home when I saw how much they took care of each other and how they ensured no one was left out during the training ses-</p><p>sions. Ini-tially, it was a big chal-lenge for Scot and I to sit down and figure out how to teach the most critical complex-ities inherent with data collection and the research process. Colleges devote entire semesters and years to teaching research concepts, while we had to sum-marize all these concepts in just a few days before traveling to other cities to begin data collection. Our goal was to give PFD-SSC as many tools as possible to carry on their research work after we left.</p><p>Specifically, we taught PFD-SSC how to conduct data collection, goal setting, the similarities and differ-ences between quantitative and qualitative methods, field work question development, mock interviews, and then begin the initial set-up for data gathering in Baguio and La Union. Day by day, I found myself in awe of how much the PFD-SSC team wanted to learn when it came to the research process itself espe-cially since it can be rather dry and it is not so simple to teach this stuff. As a teacher, I would love to have students as motivated as they are; it truly made our jobs much easier and more fun. I often found myself laughing or smiling as they welcomed me into their warm, tight-knit group during lunch breaks or dinner gatherings. It became evident to me how much PFD-SSC members cherished each learning opportunity they could grab, while making sure Scot and I had </p><p>An afternoon meeting with the Baguio City councilman.</p><p>Two weeks in the Philippines: Implementing phase one of the USAID EXPAND program </p></li><li><p>George Lintag and Yvette Apurado learn techniques for their first Group interview.</p><p>Be the change you wish to see in the world. Gandhi</p><p>DDW March 20144</p><p>good times, too. This also occurred up in the mountains of Baguio and the beach area of La Union.</p><p>Of course, this experience was not without its share of challenges. One huge professional challenge was over-coming communication and linguistic barriers in working with two of the se-lected PFD-SSC members who were heavily involved in this training and mainly responsible for gathering data in Baguio and La Union. Not only did we need to teach them, but we also needed to learn from them about their communitys research needs. It was crucial that the message was clear and received on both sides to ensure a suc-cessful research project. </p><p>During the two weeks of training, these two members experienced a va-riety of challenges themselves, from showing up on a daily basis despite everything else going on in their lives, learning new material, trying to under-stand the concept of researcher bias, traveling, being quick on their feet with the schedule changes, as well as being able to handle interviews in both groups or one-on-one situations, and accepting our feedback during training. These two PFD-SSC members became pro-tgs. They showed tremendous improvement over the training time, especially with their communication styles, professionalism, and abilities to solicit valuable data as neutral facilitators. I was proud to witness their growth and transformation and felt comfortable that they were very capable and would implement every-thing they learned from our trainings in carrying out the rest of the research.</p><p>Looking back on this trip three months later, I continue to be in awe of the high number of partici-pants engaged in our interviews in both Baguio and La Union. Despite the huge contrasts between the three cities of Manila, Baguio and La Union, the Deaf community in all cities had all shared a desire to see an improvement within their respective communities. Despite the communication, education and linguistic challenges in each Deaf community, they all had that shared vision of improvement within their local or-ganizations as well as the national PFD organization. </p><p>Each Deaf Filipino that I met was thirsty for more information, knowledge, and resources. At the end of this training back in Manila, the PFD-SSC members, along with assistance from Scot and me, developed a future data collection intervention action plan, an Organizational Management Training Manual action plan, and a potential action plan for conducting com-munity workshops in various areas of the Philippines. Having this experience and seeing how DDW truly be-came a partner in the local Deaf Filipino community, I felt inspired. It gave me hope that other Deaf commu-nities and organizations worldwide will also have the opportunity to gain this valuable partnership through DDW someday, if possible. </p><p>Dr. Shilpa Hanumantha is a faculty member at the University of Virginia with a joint appointment in the American Sign Language Program and the Depart-ment of Psychology. Hanumantha also works in private practice as a resident in clinical psychology providing comprehensive assessments for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing.</p></li><li><p>March 2014 DDW 5</p></li><li><p>DDW is sponsored by </p><p>DDW March 20146</p><p>DDWs Executive Director Davin Searls and Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf Executive Director Shane Feldman recently were in Manila, Philippines, providing training on strategic planning. Our June issue will feature more about their trip. In the meantime, for more information on the USAID EXPAND program, visit www.discoveringdeafworlds.org/programs/usaid-expand-program.</p><p>SHANE FELDMAN LEADS A DISCUSSION ON STRATEGIC PLANNING WITH THE PHILIPPINE FEDERATION OF THE DEAF.</p><p>USAID EXPAND Program: Strategic planning</p></li><li><p>An update: Philippine Deaf Resource Center</p><p>Last December, while visiting the Philippines as part of the Department of State-funded EMPOWER program, our DDW delegation had the oppor-tunity to meet Liza B. Martinez, Ph.D., founder and director of the Philippine Deaf Resource Center (PDRC) during the launch of the United Nations Con-vention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (UNCRPD) Parallel Report by the Philippine Coalition on the UN-CRPD. For over 12 years, Martinez has been a staunch advocate of the rights to language and culture for the Filipino Deaf community and all per-sons with disabilities. Her efforts have brought together numerous national and international allies, including hu-man rights defenders, researchers, professors, activists, government of-ficials, and so forth to continue fight-ing for the right to understand and be understood.</p><p>After a surmountable number of accomplish-ments, PDRC has closed its doors, transitioning continued leadership to the Philippine Federation of the Deaf and other disability rights organizations </p><p>in the Philippines. We salute Martinez for her out-standing commitment, guidance, and activism, and hope that DDWs partnership with PFD will help continue such efforts for many years to come.</p><p>To read a closing letter from Martinez, please visit www.phildeafres.org. </p><p>DDW and PFD empower participants visit with dr. Liza martinez at the uncrpd parallel report launch.</p><p>Thank you for your outstanding contributions to DDW in 2013. We are honored to receive </p><p>such support from deafREVIEW, and thank you immensely for your generous and philanthropic hearts!</p><p>echo Greenlee and Ben Abrams</p></li><li><p>Marlene Elliot: What a blessing you have been to our organization these past several months. Thank you for your interpreting services, your guidance through popular education, and your innovative ways to help raise funds for DDW. You are appreciated!</p><p>Peter Cook, Kenny Lerner, and Aaron Kelstone: We are deeply honored to have had the opportunity to showcase DDW at the Flying Words Performance at NTID. Thank you for the opportunity to engage with your fans and our local community.</p><p>Sheena Stuart: Year after year, you go above and beyond for DDW. We are so fortunate to have you and the AllOut Marketing team helping out with our annual benefit and programs in the Philippines. Thanks for all you do! </p><p>Dr. Scot Atkins and Dr. Shilpa Hanumantha: A million thanks for your outstanding efforts and contributions to the USAID-funded EXPAND program! Youve kicked off this program in the right direction and were excited for whats to come!</p><p>Shout-Outs</p><p>Source: www.un.org/disabilities/documents/maps/enablemap.jpg</p></li></ul>

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