Preparatory Mission for Maghreb Mission (2014)

  • Funded by Finnish MFA and the WFD
  • 4-day workshop in May 2014, first deaf Arab NGO activity without presence of hearing persons
  • objective: discuss needs for capacity building project in Maghreb region
  • Attended by: Trainers (Joe, Eeva, Hend), Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia (5)
  • Countries ratified: Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia
  • Common issues:
    • Deaf women are generally isolated from both deaf and mainstream communities
    • Some national associations of the deaf had been led by same people for decades and new people who have taken over them in recent years need capacity building training in leadership and human rights
    • Cooperation with other DPOs and government is not as fruitful as it could be
    • Seeking funding for national associations of the deaf is a challenge
    • Lack of awareness on importance of preserving national sign language (unified Arab sign language is a threat that could eliminate national sign languages)
    • Sign language dictionary work is mainly led by hearing people with exclusion of the national associations of the deaf
    • Slow development in Sign language interpretation: lack of service, funding for that, deaf people are not involved in interpreter training programs and public bodies use interpreters whose signing is not understood by deaf people