CLACSG, FDCP hold The Deafening Reality: A Symposium for Deaf and Sign Language

The College of Liberal Arts and Communication Student Government (CLACSG), together with the Federation of the Deaf – Cavite Province (FDCP), held “The Deafening Reality: A Symposium for Deaf and Sign Language” on September 25 at Eugenio Cabezas Room.

This symposium aimed to educate students about the Deaf rights movement and basic Filipino Sign Language (FSL). “Para matuto lahat ng students and ma-include sila. ‘Yong mga students kasi ngayon passive na parang wala silang pakialam, so ang expectation ko is matutunan nila ‘yong deaf sensitive awareness,” project head Jannah Viktoria Santos shared. 

Related to the same event held last year by Communication and Media Society (COMMSOC), CLACSG wanted to enlighten students from common misconceptions and to help the Deaf community break barriers with sensitivity and understanding. 

Deaf sensitive awareness

Aiming to open a bigger perspective among the students, this symposium targeted to disprove stigmas by providing a clearer understanding of the Deaf community as well as to gain skills in communicating through sign language for inclusivity, with FDCP resident speaker and interpreter Marc Kevin Marcial and Ember Parpa. 

Parpa would interpret Marcial while he communicates with sign language, as they discussed the common signs of being deaf and societal views on deafness. They also talked about the correct terms, clarifying that instead of assumably calling them disabled, handicapped, differently-abled, people with special needs, deaf and dumb, deaf-mute, and pipi, we need to know if they self-identify as deaf (commonly doesn’t use sign language), Deaf (has strong connection to the Deaf community and uses sign language), or Hard of Hearing (widely-accepted term to describe someone with mild to moderate hearing loss).

The second part of the program was all about the signs and meaning of FSL, including all 135 Natural Sign Language and their grammatical structure and culture. Marcial taught the students the basic sign languages such as the alphabet, numbers, greetings, days, months, and lastly, family and relationships. To help in remembering, they picked two from the audience to perform the signs after every session.

Aside from continuing the pursuit of the event, Santos believes that students learning Deaf awareness doesn’t stop with the symposium, adding that this paves way to bigger events on tackling issues and realities of society. Hindi siya matatapos dito lang.”

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