The Challenge

Deaf people worldwide are at a disadvantage to advocate for their human, cultural and linguistic rights. At least 90% of Deaf people in developing countries receive no formal education, and 80% of the world’s population of Deaf people live in low/middle income countries.

Without skilled Deaf leaders, Deaf people’s futures are placed into the hands of people who, while typically well-meaning, are not aware of the needs and desires of people who are Deaf- people who do not share the “Deaf experience.”

In the spirit of “Nothing about us without us,” Deaf people must be part of decision and policy making that affects them. That said, Deaf leaders who are effective and efficient change agents are integral to the self-determination of Deaf communities, or else they will continue to live as second-class citizens.

Our Solution

DDW partners with Deaf advocates in developing countries to provide capacity building and organizational development training. All partnerships are initiated and managed by local Deaf advocates within the host country. Every step of the organizational development process is a collaborative effort between DDW and its partners to build local capacity. The collective goal shared by DDW and its partners is to improve the standards of education, communication accessibility, employment opportunities and human rights for Deaf people in developing countries.

In addition, DDW researches and promotes pressing issues and success stories of Deaf people in developing countries, and serves to exchange information between Deaf advocates, schools and institutions around the world.