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Deaf-Led Disaster Action

On September 24, 2021, we hosted a webinar titled “Deaf-Led Disaster Action,” featuring presentations on Disaster Risk Reduction action by Deaf-led organizations in Japan, Trinidad & Tobago, and Viet Nam to raise awareness about how disasters impact these countries and the strategies used to advance disaster action. These actions begin with Deaf communities and also provide information and resources that benefit the wider society. Deaf-led organizations play a vital role in disaster and humanitarian contexts, but are often overlooked in disaster research, training, management, and reporting. Please enjoy this unique event, with interpretation into Japanese Sign Language, Hồ Chí Minh Sign Language, American Sign Language, and International Sign.

Event co-moderators: Drs. Audrey Cooper (Gallaudet University, International Development MA Program), Kota Takayama (Gallaudet University, Social Work Program), and Danielle Thompson (Gallaudet University, International Development MA Program).

We wish to offer our gratitude again to Naoki Kurano (ED, Japanese Federation of the Deaf), Bryan Rodrigues and Ian Dhanoolal (Deaf Empowerment and Advancement Foundation, Trinidad & Tobago), and Nguyễn Trần Thủy Tiên (ED, Psycho-Education & Applied Research Centre for the Deaf, VN) for their engaging presentations and for sharing their advocacy strategies with us.


IMAGE:Event invitation graphic with text. Text: Deaf-Led Disaster Action – A virtual panel hosted by the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration (GADRA) and Gallaudet University. Recorded September 24, 2021, 1 PM UTC/ 9 AM EDT/ 8 PM ITC/10 PM JST. Photo compilation of 4 presenters, with GADRA and Gallaudet logos over a purple gradient background.

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Deaf Leadership in International Disaster Policy

On Friday, October 29, 2021, we hosted a webinar titled “Deaf Leadership in International Disaster Policy,” featuring presentations by Leyla Craig (PhD candidate, University of Sydney & Disability Inclusion and Engagement Officer with Fire and Rescue of New South Wales) and Emmanuel Jacq (Founder & ED, International Deaf Emergency).

Event co-moderators: Dr. Audrey Cooper (Gallaudet University, International Development MA Program) and Dr. Kota Takayama (Gallaudet University, Social Work Program).

Event description: Over the last decade, national governments and international human rights groups have devoted increasing attention to Deaf and disability inclusion and leadership in disaster and humanitarian contexts; however, much of the available policy addresses high level rights, not the mechanisms, technologies, or systems necessary to operationalize accessible language and communication processes across all aspect of disaster management. This panel centers on ways that policy can be improved to advance Deaf leadership in disaster management, including the infrastructures and funding mechanisms needed to support implementation.

IMAGE: Still image of youtube video screen showing four zoom screens with an ombre pink and blue background and logos for the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration (GADRA) and for Gallaudet University. The four zoom screens include: (top left) PowerPoint presentation slide with “2019 IASC Guidelines on Inclusion of PWDs in Humanitarian Action”; (top right) co-moderator Audrey Cooper signing; (bottom left) co-moderator Kota Takayama observing; (bottom right) International Sign Interpreter Steven Surrency.

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Deaf Youth Disaster Experiences & Action

On November 22, 2021, we released a vodcast titled “Deaf Youth Disaster Experiences & Action” featuring Olufemi Ige (G’20, IDMA & G’21, Public Administration) and Ai Minakawa (G’21, Deaf Studies & RN, Japan).

Vodcast description: Deaf youth leaders are generating attention to climate change issues and social injustices through taking action in their communities and on a global scale. This vodcast [video-cast] feature introduces two Deaf youth leaders, their disaster-related experiences, and their recommendations to address community, regional, and/or national needs.

The vodcast episode is hosted by Ashley Inkumsah, with the World Institute on Disability, and moderated by Neha Balachandran, a graduate student in Gallaudet University’s International Development MA program, who also holds a Master of Arts degree in Deaf Education. [Update: Neha graduated in May 2022 and is now an IDMA alumnus and colleague.]

IMAGE: Opening youtube screen of a maroon slide with the event title “What’s up WID: Deaf Youth Disaster Experiences & Action. A conversation with Deaf youth from Gallaudet University.” Below the title are the three images of Neha Balachandran, Olufemi Ige, and Ai Minakawa. The Gallaudet University and Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration appear at the top of the slide.

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