Empathy on Cultural Sensitivity through peer-to-peer delegation
GRO is to create a sustainable community of Deaf advocates through the establishment of peer-to-peer programs in developing countries.
About Your Organization
Global Reach Out Initiative, Inc.
United States, DC, Washington, Washington
Country where this project is creating social impact
India, KL, Trivandrum
Is your organization a
Non‐profit / NGO / Citizen sector organization
Your role in Education
The type of school(s) your solution is affiliated with
How long has your organization been operating?
Select the stage that best applies to your solution
Established (past the previous stages and has demonstrated success)
How long has your solution been in operation?
Operating for 1‐5 years
The Need: What problem are you trying to solve?
NISH (Deaf university in Kerela) has about 200 deaf students who will obtain a Bachelor degree in either computer science or fine arts. GRO sent delegates to work with senior students in the past two years to empower the seniors on communication skills and career development as well as devleoping their self-esteem. However, the problem is that the faculty members and administrators are not fully aware of how to listen to the deaf students of what their needs are, especially when they graduate. Only 6 out of 30 who have graduated last year got jobs. Rest of them went back home and ended up back to square one where their dreams have been diminished. Continues to have a lack of resources & knowledge within the community about the ability of these deaf students.
The Solution: What is your solution? Be specific!
GRO have established a partnership with NISH by bringing deaf youth (18-30) role models from USA to work with 10 deaf seniors at NISH for three weeks during December/January of each year (up to five years). We want to expand our purpose of the visit by hosting a symposium where it would primarly focus on "how future deaf employees can be effective in a hearing environment." This is a way where deaf seniors could show what they could do at a hearing workplace by demonstrating the various communication techniques, "deaf space" on how hearing people can understand the sensitivity of the spaces that deaf would need by using their hands or having interpreters, etc. This symposium will provide a "wake-up" call for hearing employers to be aware of how deaf individuals can maintain their independence within their job abilities. Not only that, by having this symposium every year will eventually expand the job opportunities for deaf in Trivandrum to other areas.
The Model: Walk us through a specific example of how your solution makes a difference; include your primary activities
- Poster Sessions that are made by Deaf Seniors where they will demonstrate different ways of how they can be effective in a hearing workplace.
- Presenters that are either Deaf who have experienced working in a hearing environment in India or Hearing employers that have employed deaf workers and share their experiences to educate other employers and deaf students.
- Skit Performances by deaf students on various barriers that they are possibly facing at a workplace where it can educate the community on removing the assumptions that they might have on deaf people.
- A fundraiser event planned by students from NISH where they would provide performances and money would be raised for supporting after-school activities such as providing tutoring services to improve their communication skills; resume building skills; interviewing skills; etc.
The Marketplace: Who are your peers and competitors? Identify others also working to address the needs you are and what differentiates you from them. What challenges could these players pose to your success or growth?
Peers we consider include parents, organizations, businesses, and government. However, some of them may not necessarily be inclusive to this symposium because of their ideologies on the deaf. Therefore, we might find ourselves working against them, and have to push that aside to try to include them. At this point, we don't see competitors with similar interest but perhaps those who are against this idea.
Now that you have thought out your entry, help us pitch it.
Define your company, program, service, or product in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
GRO is to create a sustainable community of Deaf advocates through the establishment of peer-to-peer l programs in developing countries.
Identify what is innovative about your solution in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
Showing on what Deaf Seniors at NISH could do at a hearing workplace with their communication and accessible skills.
This Entry is about (Issues)
What has been the impact of your solution to date?
- GRO has done two delegations at NISH (2010/2011) where it has increased the personal development of each deaf Indian delegates that have joined the program where they have more self-confidence within themselves as a deaf person. GRO has provided various actiivities such as team-building activities, developing workshops on empowerment, communication skills, etc to other deaf students at NISH. Create collaborations with hearing students who are studying in audiology and speech pathology where deaf students at NISH would teach them Indian Sign Language where they would tutor them on english/grammar skills. GRO delegates have helped them to create a deaf club for the first time where we would encourage them to use the time after school to focus on deaf advocacy on how to educate the hearing people about their deafness and how to overcome their barriers by removing the assumptions from the community. There is a need for more exposure on how to make their time useful during after school.
What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?
-GRO projected by creating a social network with the employers around Trivandrum and the administrators/faculty members at NISH by hosting an annual symposium focusing on "deaf asscessibility at a hearing workplace." This would would provide the empahty among hearing peers vs. deaf peers to become more aware and remove the assumptions of what people view on deaf on what they cannot do.
- expansion of job opportunities for the deaf seniors at NISH where they can apply for jobs with the sensitivity being shared with the hearing employers.
- Possible of developing a course where NISH would offer to all seniors on career development.
- Instead of only 6 out 30 that received jobs in 2011- we hope it will increase to at least 70% of job placements for the deaf seniors at NISH.
What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?
Interpreters at the Symposium- we hope to find several interpreters who can interpert at the event. Money will be an issue to find quality interpreters since there aren't many in the area. We hope to educate the quality interpreters and have them come to the event.
- Employers to commit to participate in the syposium. We will meet them in person and elaborate on how it would benefit their companies by participating in this project and how it can impact the community as well for deaf community.
Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Create a team to develop a timeline for a Symposium to occur in Jan 2013 along with our third GRO Delegation.
Contact Potential Presenters and Interpreters to participate in this Symposium.
Contact Employers with NISH network by sending invitations as well as meeting with them to create a platform of expectations.
Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Create a curriculum on career development for NISH Students as well as for Employers to create the empahty of each other.
Select a task-force team to create annual symposium by expanding the network of empolyers from different cities in India.
Share the concept of symposium to other univeristies in India that have a deaf program where they can participate.
Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world [125 words]
Tell us about your partnerships
NISH- National Institute of Speech and Hearing ( University for the Deaf in Kerala- approx 200 deaf individuals)
Employers from companies that partners with NISH to join this project which will attract other companies to join.
What type of team (staff, volunteers, etc.) will ensure that you achieve the growth milestones identified in the Social Impact section? [75 words]
GRO has a strong volunteering team who have the passion to make a difference in deaf lives throughout the developing countries. I have a team of alumni who have participated in previous delegations who will commit to this project- including the Deaf Indian delegates who have participated in GRO.
Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list