24 January 2020 – Singapore confirms the first case of Wuhan virus, a new coronavirus that has sickened hundreds of people and killed at least 17. Here’s what you should do.
The Singapore Association for the Deaf (SADeaf) wishes you a happy and blessed Lunar New Year 2020. May your year be filled with abundant blessings, good health and happiness.
Blessed Lunar New Year 2020!
GOH CHOK TONG ENABLE AWARDS 2020
Nominations now open!
Join us in celebrating the achievements and talents of persons with disabilities within our community.
Nominate someone you believe deserving of the Awards!
For more information, visit www.mediacorp.sg/GCTEnableAwards
Singaporeans tend to be obsessed with good grades in school and paper qualifications. This leads to mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression, among students and a rising suicide rate among youths.
A group of parents started the Life Beyond Grades initiative to shift mindsets and reduce the increasing academic pressure on our young ones by showing through examples of how grades are not everything in life. The laudable positive approach led to mainstream publicity and went viral on social media, but the campaign has yet to feature people from the Deaf and disabled groups. Here are two such stories from the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing community.
“Never give up, until you succeed”
In a school which used only oral communication, I had difficulty understanding teachers and communicating with friends. I found myself in the Normal Technical (NT) stream due to less-than-stellar PSLE results. I was also enrolled in a mainstream secondary school instead of a school which used both sign language and speech. A school that used sign language would help me better communicate with others. However, because of adults thinking they know what is best for us deaf youths, I didn’t have the power of making choices at that time.
In 2015, I enrolled in a course of my choice in Kaplan, doing a Bachelor of Science in Cyber Forensics, Information Security and Management & Business Information System. At one point, I was holding two part-time jobs because it was difficult for employers to accept a Deaf person in a full-time position. Trials like this really challenged my belief in not giving up until I succeed. Two years after graduation, I finally landed a full-time position.
I am especially grateful to my friends and mother for supporting me through my secondary, ITE, polytechnic, and university years. My classmates would explain concepts to me by writing or speaking slowly. Communicating and socialising with hearing people was a challenge for me, but these friends were kind and helpful. Thank you for being my friends.
Grades may be important, and so is having the perseverance and determination to strive hard for ourselves. But the social support from friends and family makes it so much better for us.
“Embrace the process, not just the product“
I quickly left the school upon receiving my PSLE results. I had mixed feelings. Even though I was too young to understand what my results meant, I felt paiseh. I wasn’t ashamed of myself, but I just guess that society wanted me to.
A light bulb lit up in my head during my secondary school days, and I peaked during my polytechnic years. I realised I needed to face reality and work harder than my hearing peers if I want to succeed. And I did. I managed to receive a scholarship in polytechnic, and am currently under a scholarship at university.
I wish this is a happy ending, but it isn’t. University life is challenging. I didn’t have a regular clique to depend on with because classmates change every semester. With new classmates, I had to keep repeating my story of being Deaf and my communication preferences. Given my shy personality, this was a struggle. I remembered the joy of scoring 71 marks for a quiz only to find out that I had received one of the lowest scores in class. My results were not up to expectations, and I even received a warning letter for not meeting my scholarship grade requirements. I remember getting left behind for class participation (which was graded) because it was advancing too quickly for a notetaker to catch up. I remember applying for withdrawal from school because I simply couldn’t keep up.
I’m not here to tell you a zero-to-hero story. I’ve learned that school and life is a process; there will always be ups and downs, and a single moment should not define us. I feel we should not compare ourselves with others because different people have different abilities and learning. To everyone out there, and to my younger sister, I wish to say results and failures aren’t everything. It’s about the experience and process. Even now, I’m still struggling to improve myself, and I’m sure you are too. Find something to release your worries and stress. Let’s work smart to get better each day.
1 Dec 2019 – Dr Peng Chung Mien accepted the Public Service Medal (Posthumous) on behalf of his late father, Mr Peng Tsu Ying from President Halimah Yacob at ITE College Central.
Mr Steven Chong and Mr Aloysius Lee shares their experience driving with Grab.
A report from World Federation of the Deaf (2009) found that out of 93 national deaf organizations around the world, 31 of them still deny Deaf people of their right to drive in their country. allow deaf people to obtain a driver’s license in their country.
One of the stories in ‘The Merdeka Stories II’ film series is inspired by Ms Barbara D’Cotta – who is the head of SADeaf’s deaf education department and has dedicated many years of service to teaching deaf students.
Read the article here: https://www.straitstimes.com/…/lifeguard-and-special-educat…
Photo credits: The Straits Times
My name is Vasuthan Yuogan and I’m born deaf. I’m 21 years old this year. My mother passed away in a tragic car accident when I was three. Unable to accept the loss of my mother, my father drank and smoked excessively, and later developed lung disease. He was also diagnosed with depression when I was eight and was admitted to the Institute of Mental Health. He had no means and ability to care for me. Hence, I have been staying in the Boys’ Home for as long as I can remember.
I’m currently studying Facility and Technology at NITEC. My dream is to be the first Deaf person to succeed in the air-conditioning and refrigeration industry.
My humble achievements would not have been possible without the support of The Singapore Association for the Deaf (SADeaf), as well as my teachers from the Deaf school. They gave me a sense of direction and helped me achieve every little milestone and goal in my life.
“SADeaf has encouraged me to stay strong and emphasised that I need to study hard not only for myself but also for my late mother. One day I will have a place to call home and start a family of my own.”
It’s important for Deaf children to receive essential support to reach their full potential. Please donate generously to SADeaf. Only with sufficient resources to cover the Association’s daily operational expenses, SADeaf can continue their work to run meaningful programmes to benefit and better serve the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing community. This may help transform the lives of Deaf people like me so that I may better integrate with society
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Singapore, Friday, 27 September 2019 —The Singapore Association for the Deaf (SADeaf) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Grab to appoint Grab as SADeaf’s Ambassador to form a partnership to promote Deaf awareness and make the Grab platform more accessible and inclusive for the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community. Highlights of the partnership includes a public education campaign and Grab in-app feature enhancements to promote better communications between the public and Deaf partners, as well as skills upgrading opportunities for Grab Deaf partners. The partnership is also one of the many initiatives under Grab’s ‘Grab for Good’ social impact programme which aims to empower people in Singapore to benefit from the fast-growing digital economy and have more choices and opportunities to improve their livelihoods.
The MOU was signed by Ms Judy Lim, Acting Executive Director for The Singapore Association for the Deaf and Mr Yee Wee Tang, Country Head of Grab Singapore, and witnessed by Mr David Phung, Head of Corporate Affairs, The Singapore Association for the Deaf and Mr Russell Cohen, VP for Regional Operations, Grab at an appreciation luncheon hosted by Grab for its Deaf and hard-of-hearing driver and delivery partners today. Grab was also appointed as SADeaf’s Ambassador for the Deaf, a partnership between SADeaf and corporates that fosters ongoing support and collaboration for the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community, at the same event.
“Grab believes everyone should have access to financial independence – regardless of background or ability. Through this partnership, we hope to empower more Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals by providing them with another source of income. Beyond that, we also hope to gain more understanding of their challenges and offer a friendlier environment for them to work in,” said Yee Wee Tang, Country Head of Grab Singapore. “We’re committed to inclusivity, and want to support these partners as they create a better future for themselves and their families. They inspire us every day, and it motivates us to continually design and build more products to enable more meaningful earning opportunities.”
Ms Judy Lim, Acting Executive Director for The Singapore Association for the Deaf, said “We are very happy with this collaboration with Grab becoming our Ambassador for the Deaf. It has brought about employment for Deaf and hard-of-hearing drivers, creating independent living and financial sustainability for them. This has also been made possible through the use of Grab app where there is no need for verbal communication between the driver and the passenger. Passengers who take the ride with Deaf drivers are also being notified by the Grab app. There is even the dashboard at the back of the seat to tell you how to communicate with the Deaf. This makes the ride very friendly and comfortable, helping passengers gain a better understanding about the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community. We appreciate Grab for this very meaningful initiative.”
Today, some 50 Deaf driver and delivery-partners are earning an income on the Grab platform in Singapore. The year-long partnership will allow Grab to better understand the needs and challenges of the local Deaf community, which will be used to build solutions and advocacy programs to serve them better.
It also serves to further strengthen the commitment towards specific initiatives that can best provide income and welfare opportunities for the Deaf driver and delivery-partners. Both parties are collaborating to provide the following support:
Members from the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community are encouraged to sign up as a member with SADeaf to take full advantage of the benefits.
As part of its commitment to do more for the community, Grab had earlier conducted focus group discussions with its existing Deaf driver-partners to get their feedback on how Grab can provide them with a better driving and delivery experience. Based on their inputs, Grab will be implementing the following product, platform and process improvements in the coming year:
Teo Hang Keong, a Grab Deaf driver-partner in Singapore, said, “I have a full time job as an intelligence data analyst, but it is not enough to support my family. Driving part-time for Grab to supplement my income has been helpful, as I am also planning for my retirement.”
When asked about his experience as a Grab driver-partner, he shared “The passengers I come across are very understanding, and they do not doubt my driving skills just because I am Deaf. Some of them are even able to communicate with me using sign language, which really makes my day!”
Peter Ho, another Deaf-driver partner in Singapore, shared, “I have been driving since I was in my 20s. My dad told me to get a driving license as driving is a useful skill that would come in useful in the future. I like driving because I get to meet and interact with new people from different parts of the society. I also hope they gain an understanding and patience with people with disabilities.
I enjoy sending them to Changi Airport, and helping them with their luggage. While driving can be tiring at times, my sons know that I do it for them and that’s what keeps me going.”
Grab is the leading super app in Southeast Asia, providing everyday services that matter most to consumers. Today, the Grab app has been downloaded onto over 152 million mobile devices, giving users access to over 9 million drivers, merchants and agents. Grab has the region’s largest land transportation fleet and has completed over 3 billion rides since its founding in 2012. Grab offers the widest range of on-demand transport services in the region, in addition to food and package delivery services, across 339 cities in eight countries. For more information, please visit grab.com.
Established in 1955, the Singapore Association for the Deaf (SADeaf) has been serving the Deaf and Hard-of-hearing community for the past six decades. SADeaf is a member of the National Council of Social Service (NCSS), and is supported by Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) and Ministry of Education (MOE).
The association is also affiliated, internationally, to the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) and, locally, to the Children Charities’ Association (CCA). SADeaf will be celebrating its 65th Anniversary in 2020. For more information, please visit saDeaf.org.sg
|Media Contact |
Mr David Phung, Head of Corporate Affairs, SADeaf, email@example.com, 9105 5048