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Sunday, August 28, 2011

DDW's Journey to Cambodia and Thailand

Travelers with Discovering Deaf Worlds recently returned from a trip to Cambodia and Thailand. Here's a report on their adventure courtesy of DDW's Executive Director, Davin Searls:

We had a wonderful group of eight travelers who bonded from day one! Even though we had the full spectrum of signing Deaf people to interpreters to a hearing person who knew no sign language at all, the participants made sure that everyone was included. In fact, by the end of the trip, our one non-signer was having conversations in not only ASL, but Cambodian Sign Language as well!

Our group especially enjoyed their time with the local Deaf community and our visits to DDW partner organizations. We watched a fantastic dance performance by Deaf vocational students at Epic Arts, and even joined the students in a creative dance workshop! For DJ and I, it was an inspiration to see such incredible growth in the Cambodian Deaf community. Four or five years ago, there were very few visible Deaf leaders - and after this visit, we were in awe about the strength of independence behind the local Deaf community to coordinate our visit, lead workshops with our group of mixed hearing and Deaf people, and formally teach us a crash course in Cambodia Sign Language!

We also squeezed in some exciting cultural ventures like Muay Thai (kickboxing), a visit to the Temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia and the Grand Palace in Thailand, and taste-testing exotic street food like crickets - which surprisingly, weren't half bad!

Without a doubt, this was a memorable Journey for everyone- we have to thank our local cultural representatives for making us all feel at home!

Thanks, Davin for sharing your thoughts on the trip! In the video below, you will see one of the journey participants share her experiences in Cambodia.

To see the group's itinerary in Cambodia and Thailand click here. To learn more about travel opportunities with Discovering Deaf Worlds, click here.

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