News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

Deafblind: Unique Communicators

To say that someone who is deafblind faces unique challenges when trying to communicate with others could be seen as stating the obvious. Yet is it? While many will have tried to imagine living without one of their key senses few will have tried to imagine what it is like to be without two. Yet for over 1,000 New Zealanders, living without sight and hearing is a reality.

The Royal New Zealand Foundation for the Blind is the only provider of services and support to deafblind people to enable them to meet the challenge of deafblindness and maintain independence. The RNZFB believes that government should fund services to deafblind people although at present it is not.

Working with the Foundation is the consumer group DeafBlind NZ Inc, which has just elected the following people on to its committee. Max Comer, President, Huntly Terry Free, first Vice President, Auckland Don Birnie, second Vice President, Wellington Malcolm Haynes, Secretary, Hastings Graham Scahill, Treasurer, Whangarei On the committee are: Bruce Clough, Taranaki; Margaret Wiberg, Timaru; June Stead, Hastings and Gloria Campbell of Auckland. "We will be setting up cell groups in various areas so that the committee can keep in touch with deafblind members around the country. We also want to keep the issue of deafblindness in front of the community so that everyone understands the challenges people face and become aware of what they can do to remove barriers to people's full participation in the community," says DeafBlind Inc's new president, Max Comer.

Being deaf and blind is a unique disability that requires special methods of communication. It also calls for special skills if a deafblind person is to move safely around the community and workplace. And there are special adjustments that have to be made so that every day tasks can be completed.

The Royal New Zealand Foundation for the Blind and DeafBlind Inc. will be working together over the next few weeks to raise awareness of the special needs of deafblind people particularly as Helen Keller Day approaches on 27 June.

Helen Keller Day acknowledges the challenges faced by deafblind people while recalling one of the most admired deafblind people of all time. Helen Keller was left deafblind when she contracted an illness as a two year old. However, she went on to graduate from college and became a champion of the under privileged and oppressed.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
At Bats: Locke - The World Theatrical Premiere

On the eve of the biggest challenge of his career, Ivan Locke receives a phone call that sets in motion a series of events that will unravel his family, job and soul... More>>

Other Elections: Kea Crowned Bird Of The Year

These large, green mountain parrots are known for their curiosity and intelligence. Once numbering in the hundreds of thousands, they are now classified as Nationally Endangered with just 3,000 - 7,000 birds remaining. More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis Review: Conflict & Resistance - Ria Hall's Rules of Engagement

From the aftermath of war through colonisation to her own personal convictions, Hall's new CD addresses current issues and social problems on multiple levels, confirming her position as a polemical and preeminent voice on the indigenous NZ music scene. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Another Time, Another Place - David Friesen Trio Live

"It has been said of David Friesen that he does for the art of bass playing what Pythagoras did for the triangle" - Patrick Hinley, Jazz Times. At Wellington's newest jazz venue, the cozy and intimate Pyramid Cub, the trio clicked together from the opening bars, presenting many of the tunes from their marvelous new recording. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Father - Descending Into The Depths of Dementia

Florian Zeller's dazzling drama The Father explores the effects of a deeply unsettling illness that affects 62,000 Kiwis, a number expected to grow to 102,000 by 2030. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION