Arielle Ollivierre, the St Vincent Brewery’s sponsored contestant in the upcoming Miss SVG Pageant, is spearheading a campaign for greater awareness for the hearing impaired.
“The SVG Beauty Shows Committee has mandated that all eight contestants plan and execute a General Employee Cooperative Credit Union (GECCU) sponsored one-week community project on a selected theme as part of their preparations for the pageant. My focus in on Advocacy for the disabled (hearing and speech impaired): Different but Able, silently signing and striving,”Ollivierre said in a release.
“Imagine if one person per household knows sign language and that person is able to communicate with someone else who is hearing impaired. Imagine if our teachers receive basic sign and disability training to be able to communicate with students effectively or if front line workers like cashiers, receptionists, nurses and police all know how to sign ‘Good morning, how can I help you?’ And then for them be able to provide guidance for the hearing impaired with sign language.
“I have therefore decided to use my concern for the hearing impaired community and the opportunity given to me by the Beauty Shows Committee and GECCU to use this one week project to raise the awareness in my community of Stubbs in particular and to the public in general,” the release said.
The week of activities was launched on Sunday September 18 with a FUN DAY at the Stubbs Playing field. Included among the activities were cricket, dominoes, health checks, sale of food and drinks, musical entertainment and lots of activities for children and patrons.
The funds raised at that event will be donated to the Society of and for Persons with Disabilities on Friday September 23 which is International Sign Language Day.
On Monday, September 19, public servants benefited from a sign language session which was held at the Ministerial Building. The participants were very enthusiastic about learning the language because the opportunity equipped them with an additional communication tool which would enhance their customer service experience.
On Tuesday, September 20, Arielle and her team visited the St Clair Dacon Secondary and the Stubbs Primary schools on a mission to plant a seed in the young minds regarding communications through sign language. The students were very excited during the one hour session and demonstrated a heart-warming enthusiasm for a second session slated for Thursday, September 22.
Today, Wednesday September 21, it will be the turn of the nurses at the Stubbs Poly Clinic and officers at the Stubbs Police Station to receive this valuable set of instructions which is being provided by Terrence Davis from the Society of and for Persons with Disabilities.
Davis has been teaching for more than 26 years and is a fluent sign language instructor.
Friday, September 23, 2022 is International Sign Language Day.
“An exhibition under the Post Office gallery in Kingstown will give members of the disability community the opportunity to showcase their work and to teach members of the general public many of the frequently used sign language expressions. This day promises to be an exciting one,” the release said.
The week of activities will culminate on Saturday, September 23, when Team Arielle will visit the homes of eight hearing impaired persons in the Stubbs community to recognize their abilities and to present them with gift baskets.
Team Arielle is extremely thankful to all the persons who continue to support this disability awareness campaign: Different but Able, silently signing and striving.