DbI Review issue Number 45 • January – June 2010
Deafblind International was formerly known as the International Association for the Education of Deafblind People.
DbI Review appears twice yearly, the two editions are dated January-June and July-December.
The editor will be pleased to receive articles, news items, letters, notices of books and information on forthcoming events, such as conferences and courses, concerning deafblind children, young adults and older people. Photographs and drawings are welcome; they will be copied and returned.
All written material should be in the English language and may be edited before publication. It should be sent for publication to arrive by the date below.
Opinions expressed in articles are those of the author and should not be understood as representing the view of DbI.
DbI Review is also available on disk. If you are interested in receiving your copy in this format, please contact:
PO Box 143, Burswood
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Distribution and DbI Membership
Stan Munroe and Secretariat
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Port Morien, NS, Canada B1B 1C6
Cover: Pre-School Program at ADEFAV, São Paulo
LAST COPY DATE FOR YOUR NEWS: 20 October 2010
Dear friends and colleagues!
Despite the transport problems of the past months caused by weather and ash, DbI was able to be present at various deafblindness related international events.
The DbI Management Committee organised its meeting in São Paolo, Brazil in February. We had the pleasure to meet with the hosts of the World Conference to be held there next year. I hope that many of you will be able to meet there for what I am sure will be a memorable experience.
After Brazil I was invited to a Board meeting of WFDB in Bangkok led by Lex Grandia. I wish to extend to Lex, on our behalf, all the very best wishes in dealing with his health.
In April I participated in a wonderful conference in Melbourne, Australia. All the workshop sessions I attended were of such high quality that they could have, each in its own way, been a key note speech.
The next stop on my travel was Bulgaria, where I attended an executive meeting of the European Deafblind Union (EDBU). I would like to congratulate the Bulgarian National Association of the Deafblind for their achievements over the last years.
In many of the meetings where DbI was present it has been stressed the importance of the UN Convention and the recognition of deafblindness as a unique disability. This is very high on the list of importance in many countries. I wish to congratulate the government of Italy for finally recognising deafblindness in legislation, after many years of promoting this law.
As for the rest of this year it is really satisfying to see the amount of planned activities, including the family meeting in Olomouc, Czech Republic, the Communications Network Course in Paris and the Acquired Deafblindness Network Conference in Aalborg, Denmark. The programmes are of the highest quality and I am sure will stimulate knowledge, networking and friendship.
And finally this is the first Review organised and prepared by our new Information Officer Stan Munroe who I think has done a splendid job getting this together.
Once again, thanks to all who, in whatever manner, are supporting Deafblind International and in consequence deafblind children, adults, families and professionals around the world.
First, I would like to introduce myself as the new DbI Information Officer and Editor for DbI Review. The handover from Eileen Boothroyd (Sense UK) to me and the Canadian Deafblind Association (CDBA) took place April 01, 2010. Replacing Eileen will be a very hard act to follow, indeed. But like Eileen, I will be open to materials coming from all directions about any topic related to deafblindness for the DbI Review.
I hope that you will be pleased with the content in this magazine’s edition. Perhaps you might notice the presence of numerous articles from Latin America. While it was intentional to highlight Brazil, considering they are the hosts for the 2011 World Conference, it was an added bonus to have articles from Colombia, Venezuela and the Dominican Republic.
You will be in for a special treat should you attend the 15th DbI World Conference in São Paulo, Brazil, 27 September 27- 01 October, 2011. The Brazilians know how to put on great conferences (which I know from personal experience having the privilege of attending three conferences organized by Grupo Brasil). Like the Brazilian article in this magazine might imply, the success of their conferences has been the result of exceptional organizational networking.
As someone who has observed the world-wide growth of programs during the past 35 years, it is special to see the important progress that is occurring in so many locations around the world. In addition to the Latin American projects, this edition also features several other examples from such developing countries as Lebanon and Romania. I would be remiss if I didn’t indicate that the rapid expansion of development in this field is, in many cases, the result of partnerships with such international organizations as Perkins International, Sense International and Christoffel Blindenmission (CBM).
To highlight the technical nature of DbI Review, this edition features several important scientific articles and practical articles. Jude Nicholas’ article on touch is another welcome neurological work advancing the understanding of people with deafblindness. The scientifically based observations that the tactile abilities of individuals who are deafblind are superior to sighted-hearing people should not be surprising at all!
The article from Royal Dutch Kentalis at Sint-Michielsgestel demonstrates the use computer technology to develop literary for children with deafblindness.
The Swiss have submitted a practical based article describing how SNAB is using ICF, the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health in their services to visually and hearing impaired people. This classification system will be a topic at the ADBN Conference in Aalborg Denmark, September 29-Oct 03, 2010.
Promoting artistic experiences for people who are deafblind is becoming an important focus. Check out the article on the sensory arts program at Deafblind Ontario Services, Sense Scotland’s announcement of their 9th International Helen Keller Award and the reference to a Creative Deafblind Artisans Art Show in Brantford, Ontario, mid-summer, 2011.
In closing, I wish to say that DbI is always welcoming comments and suggestions from the membership about the information program. Perhaps you are aware that DbI is considering a future change in the magazine format, from being print to a web based format. It would be interesting to hear from the readership about this intention.
Thanks to everyone who has submitted material. I truly value your support during this transitional period.Your contributions are most important towards continuing to make DbI Review such a great magazine.