Last night, I was asked, “Do you struggle being a deaf person in the real world?”
I sighed and responded, “Well, I want you acknowledge deaf people’s accomplishments and contributions in the world.”
A Deaf Australian woman, Drisana, was named Young Australian of Year for 2015. She has been raising awareness about sign language and human rights of deaf people. She has inspired many of us. She’s only 21 years old (I believe).
Four deaf co-founders started a company, MotionSavvy, focusing on the field of gestural-recognition that identifies our sign language and converts signs into text on devices, breaking down communication barriers and improving our communication accessibility. They recently announced that they have gained 500k funding from Wells Fargo. It is quite difficult to land a large amount and get in one of the top accelerators in the United States.
You know how complicated North Korea is. They’re ruthless. They’re dangerous. Yet a Deaf German came and found a way to convince North Korea to let some Deaf North Koreans visit the World Federation of the Deaf. And the best part about this one was witnessing Deaf North Koreans getting to meet Deaf South Koreans. That was a very special moment for all of us.
Leah is the White House receptionist. Her job is to greet anyone from world leaders or general members to President or high-level profile people. She’s also deaf.
Nyle is currently competing in American’s Next Top Model (ANTM) and is representing the deaf community well by educating the world about being a deaf person. He’s good-looking dude, you’d probably want to marry him. He is literally changing how the world perceives/thinks of deaf people.
Deaf West have produced a Tony-winning musical and were selected to play at a Broadway theatre. They’ve been doing really well. Countless hearing people marvelled at their plays.
Lastly, I’ve been traveling the world for seven months. You’ve no idea how many successful deaf people are out there. I’ve learned many sign languages. Many deaf I have met in the world have always welcomed me. (It’s so easy to make new deaf friends). And I made countless hearing friends. I’m currently working with big-time companies like NorthFace, Patagonia, etc. Philippines Airline has recently contacted me for taking photos in a specific location.
Age doesn’t matter. Skin doesn’t matter. Height doesn’t matter. How smart or stupid you are doesn’t matter. Disability doesn’t matter. What matters the most is that you believe in yourself.
Now, do I really have to give you an answer? Have I said enough? Maybe I should ask, aren’t our actions enough yet?”
Deaf people are capable of doing anything; we have the knowledge and skill to take whatever it is.
However, obstacles do still exist in our lives but, again, let’s remind ourselves the fact there aren’t as many obstacles today as there used to be.
With a driven passion for adventure, travel, and visual communication, Calvin is on a journey to inspire the global Deaf community to travel the world. Through Seek the World, Calvin creates jaw-dropping videos, vibrant photographs, and bridges the communication divide between our colourful Deaf community – his aim is to inspire, educate, and break down barriers!
The Limping Chicken is the world's most popular Deaf blog, and is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne. Find out how to write for us by clicking here, how to follow us by clicking here, and read our disclaimer here.
The site exists thanks to our supporters. Check them out below:
- Eyewitness Media: TV and film from a Deaf perspective
- Ai-Media: Remote captioning. Find out about 5 funny ways to use captions!
- Bellman & Symfon: home alerting solutions
- Deaf Umbrella: sign language interpreting and communications support
- Appa: Communication services for Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing people
- SignLive: Online video interpreting for Deaf people
- SignVideo: Instant BSL video interpreting online
- 121 Captions: captioning and speech-to-text services
- Signature: Leading awarding body for BSL qualifications
- The National Theatre: Captioned and BSL accessible theatre in London
- Doncaster School for the Deaf: education for Deaf children
- Signworld: Learn BSL online!
- Action Deafness Communications: sign language and Red Dot online video interpreting
- BSLcourses.co.uk: Provider of online BSL courses
- Association of Notetaking Professionals: The professional body representing Electronic and Manual Notetakers
- Sign Solutions: communication support, training and translation
- InterpretersLive: On demand BSL video interpretation
- Hamilton Lodge School in Brighton: education for Deaf children
- Lipspeaker UK: specialist lipspeaking support
- Ozen: Australian hearing aid specialists
- Elmfield School, Bristol: Inclusive education for Deaf pupils
- deafPLUS: BSL advice helpline
- Exeter Deaf Academy: education for Deaf children
- Royal Shakespeare Company: Captioned and BSL interpreted performances (see dates here)
- Royal School for the Deaf, Derby: Residential education for deaf children
- RAD Tax Advice: Tax and Tax Credit info for Deaf people
- Performance Interpreting: BSL interpreting at concerts
- National Deaf Children's Society: The leading charity for deaf children
- Signed Culture: Advocating for BSL access to arts and culture
- SignHealth: healthcare charity for Deaf people
- CJ Interpreting: communication support in BSL
- British Society for Mental Health and Deafness: Promoting positive mental health for deaf people