Deaf Zimbabwe Trust Annual Report 2015

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Deaf Zimbabwe Trust began work advancing the rights of the Deaf in Zimbabwe in 2013. For an organisation that is 3 years old, DZT has made significant strides. Operating under the theme, “Becoming Citizens”, DZT seeks to restore the citizenship of the Deaf community in Zimbabwe. This entails enjoying the same rights as Non Deaf people with regards to access to health, quality education, higher education, work and access to information and all the rights that are encapsulated in the Sustainable Development Goals.

The lives of Deaf people in Zimbabwe remain precarious marred with marginalisation and discrimination. There still exist attitudes within society that demean the value and the potential within people with disabilities and the Deaf are among the most marginalised. The invisibility of Deafness results in the Deaf community being forgotten because a lot of focus is placed on more visible forms of disability.

Zimbabwe has made significant strides in recognising the unique language of Deaf people through constitutional recognition of sign language. This is an important development for Zimbabwe and the Deaf community in particular. However for the Deaf community to fully enjoy their citizenship, there is need to make their language rights real through the enactment of a Sign Language law that compels public and private entities to provide sign language and sign language interpreters in for the Deaf. There is need to make the right accommodations for the Deaf community to be able to contribute to the development of our country and have better futures.

The struggle ahead remains uphill but I believe that the journey of a thousand steps begins with one step and as DZT we are committed to taking these steps for the empowerment of the Deaf community in Zimbabwe. I wish to thank all DZT partners for the support they gave to DZT in 2015.

The secretariat worked extremely hard in 2015 and I wish to express my gratitude for the hard work. Well done Team.

About DZT

Deaf Zimbabwe Trust was formed and registered as a trust in 2012 and began operations in 2013. Initially the organisation was formed to advance the rights of Deaf children.

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