Gambia Association of Deaf and Hard of Hearing GADHOH on 14 September 2012 held a press conference ahead of the three-day celebration of the International Deaf Week at its head office in Kanifing layout.
The press conference was held to further raise the awareness of the public about the purpose of the International Deaf Week and its celebration, plight of the deaf in the communities and the efforts of GADHOH and its partners in advocating and reducing the plight and constraints of people with disabilities.
Speaking at the press conference, the executive director of GADHOH, Dodou Loum, said GADHOH was established in 1992 and since then it has been contributing tirelessly towards the development of the deaf and hard of hearing in the country.
Loum pointed out that the association first employed five people in the 1990s and they provided those staff with salaries and mainly received support from donors.
Loum revealed that the association has improved the lives of the deaf and hard of hearing in the country in education and other sectors, adding that they also train interpreters, some of whom are now teaching in the provinces.
He seized the opportunity to call on the private sector and individuals to come out and aid the deaf and hard of hearing to realize their objectives.
The president of GADHOH, Abdou Kadari Drammeh, said the press conference was also meant to discuss the forthcoming celebration of the International Day of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
Mr Drammeh revealed that a similar conference was organised by GADHOH at the KMC last year, which was geared towards the celebration of the International Day of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
Drammeh thanked the media for their tireless contribution towards the welfare of deaf people in the country. He seized the opportunity to call on the authorities put signboard in all villages and towns to ease their constraints in travelling.
For his part, the secretary general of GADHOH, Abdoulai Sarr, challenged the government to support the deaf and hard of hearing to realize their dreams and aspirations.
“Deaf people are not treated fairly and are part of the society,” Mr Sarr said, adding that in countries like Nigeria and Ghana the deaf are recognised and are contributing immensely towards the development of their countries.
Sarr finally appealed to the government to establish a deaf senior secondary school and university for them to continue their education.