Monday, May 17, 2010
Sign Language and Video Phone
Sign language is a passion of mine.
I can interpret and have interpreted at the MTC for the deaf missionaries and worked for the School of the Deaf and Blind among other interpreting assignments. I want to interpret again one day after my children are older.
When I first became involved with the Deaf world, if I needed to make a phone call to one of my friends I would use a TTY. It is a typing device where the hearing impaired individual would type the words then the voice operator would read it to me then I would tell the operator what to type. It took forever and often the meaning of the message was lost since spoken English is different than sign, especially ASL (American Sign Language.)
Now there is Video Phone. It is great! The deaf person can sign back and forth with an interpreter who is speaking to the hearing person, or two deaf people can just sign back and forth. The hearing impaired love speaking in their natural language.
This technology is in jeopardy due to lack of financial aid. Its loss not only hurts the deaf but interpreters too. I was actually hoping to use my interpreting skills to becoming one of these video phone interpreters in the future.
Also my dear friend works for the video phone company called SorsenVRS. She helps set up the system in other hearing impaired family's homes.
If you want to learn more here is a video you can watch, there are subtitles for those of you who don't know sign language. (For some reason when this video is played on my blog it cuts out half the picture you can go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8IUHLYnc1LI to see it correctly.)
No money donation required! All you have to do to help is send an email to FCC and it's already set up and typed up for you. All you need to put down is your name, address, email address, and a bullet for hearing or deaf. That's all it takes. It takes two minutes of your time. It's on www.sorensonvrs.com/savevrs.