Celebrating Sign Language, celebrating Inclusion in communities for all is not just words but a challenging task for every organization joining all Deaf Persons globally. In the Ugandan Context, we celebrate Ugandan Sign Language as quoted in the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda Article 35 clause (c) promote the development of Sign Language for the Deaf. The same article clearly emphasizes on the rights of persons with disabilities to which Deaf persons are inclusive.
As NUWODU, we do not only recruit, empower Deaf staff in the workforce, but empower all our women and girls who proudly use Sign language and have always been exemplary in ensuring all the proud users of Sign Language are protected and exercise their freedom in decision- making by making Sign Language available at all levels of their engagement.
As we celebrate the culmination of International Deaf Awareness Week and the theme “Building Inclusive Communities for All: Sign Language Unites Us”, it is important to note that provision of Sign Language Interpretation as a service does not stop just at NUWODU but extends to all our women’s rights movements whom we work closely with.
There is urgent need for mainstream Women’s rights organisations to budget for Sign Language Interpretation services and procure them through the right channels for the effective and meaningful participation of Deaf staff or participants in their various programs. Sign Language does not only unite us but increases the visibility and uniqueness of Deaf persons and persons with disabilities at large.
We extend our gratitude to our funders OSIEA, UNWOMEN, Womankind who have contributed generously towards the participation of rural Deaf women and girls in the national celebration.
Written by Aserait Agnes, Program Officer GBV prevention – Nuwodu Uganda