Kia ora Tatou,
Hello to all of us,
Pacific Disability Forum
The following message has been received from Co-Chair Latoa, “… on the passing away of Dr Kevin Murfitt who represented WBU Oceania Subregion in past PDF regional conferences and chaired the Pacific DPO Fund successfully in his term.
May Kevin’s legacy inspire us to serve our community with commitment, passion and to the best of our ability”.
The team at Deafblind Association NZ send our condolences to Kevin’s husband and whānau.
As the year closes in there will be some of us holding loved ones dear in our hearts and sharing memories. Kia kaha tatou.
Louis Braille Day, 4 January
This day celebrates Braille and Braille Literacy. I love my Perkins! Congratulations go to Rose and the team at Blind Citizens NZ for the Braille Special Interest Network. Dave Allen has shared this: “Earlier this week, I read in the latest issue of Talking Book Topics, the brief info saying that United Airlines has begun adding Braille seat numbers to their fleet of planes.
“The info stated that they expect to complete this process by 2026. This is the best news I have heard about Braille in recent times.”
Thanks as always Dave for passing on these little snippets.
A reminder for those undertaking tertiary education: applications to the Oppenheim fund will close on 10 January 2024. This financial fund is available to assist Blind Low Vision NZ clients who are enrolled in Tertiary education and in their second year or above. Students of any age and both full and partial clients can apply online via the Support Grants webpage on the Blind Low Vision NZ website. For further information, call our contact centre on 0800 24 33 33.
College House Alumni Magazine 2023
We have just received a copy of this and our conference from January is featured with my Executive Officer personal reflections and some photos, including our ukelele jam, a ‘shot’ of archery, a Tactile Interpreter with Phil, and Diane and Ann chatting in front of the rush for the icecream van!
Contributors, Volunteers, and Consumer Organisation Friends
Thank you to all who have contributed to our growth together over 2023 – we couldn’t have done it without you! And to our sponsors, Blind Low Vision NZ, Rehabilitation International, NZSL Board, NZ Lotteries Commission, Accessibility Advisors, Phonak, Call A Geek, and Rātā Foundation – you believe in the critical mahi that supports self-determination for deafblind and we thank you for understanding in all the practical ways that you do.
I asked the Board and Board Secretary to let us know just one thing about why they volunteer their time to drive and strive for this organisation. Here’s what they said.
Frysna Rimoni: The thing that brings me joy about working for Deafblind Association NZ is the people – it’s where I feel most welcome.
Sharon Gilman: It gives me joy being a member of the Deafblind Trust team, their passion, competence, professionalism and commitment is inspiring.
Dave Karl: One thing that brings me joy working with Deafblind NZ is meeting and working with the growing group of professionals upskilling and connecting around working with DeafBlind kids.
Neil Jarvis: I am delighted to be part of an organisation which contributes to progress towards a fairer go for deafblind people and that deafblind people are increasingly seen and heard.
Sarah Walters: learning to see with other perspectives changes how I see things.
Kevin Prince: seeing the community come together and take the lead in its own future.
Kevin extends his wishes to you all for a Meri Kirihimete, Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!
As for me, I wish you, the Board, and Sarah a little joy in every day. Catch you again on Ramere, Friday, 12 January 2024.
Whaikaha Community Newsletter
Tēnā koutou katoa,
Welcome to our latest community update. There are a few options for how you can receive this content, including easy read, large print, Braille, audio, te reo Māori and NZSL with captions and audio narration. These are all available on the website via the following link.
Community Update December 2023
Contents in the Whaikaha update include:
- A word from Paula
- Whaikaha 2022/23 Annual Report
- My Home, My Choice engagement
- Review into policies, processes, and practices for managing complaints
- Disability Action Plan review
- Partnerships update
- United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) update
- New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) Office update
- Jobs at Whaikaha.
A snippet of our connections in 2023
January 2023 – Our Be Seen Be Heard Be Connected Seminar in Christchurch: Sharon Gilman with Rosie, John Billings with Jagger, Vaughan Dodd with Archer, Judy Small with Que, Don McKenzie with Asia, Ann Taylor with Ben, Clive Lansink with Lennox, Judy Nicholson with Seth and Sali Britnell with Sienna.
Very best wishes for connections and events of the festive season.
If you know of anything we should be including here in 2024 then please let us know. Event reminders are included below.
Links to other newsletters
Following is a link to have a browse of The D*List website or sign up to receive their weekly newsletter.
Be Seen be Heard be Connected Weekly Update
Please note, access to our weekly be Seen Be Heard Be Connected emails is also available on our website via our events page, at the following link.
As usual, event reminders and TellMe phone numbers follow.
Ngā mihi mahana,
Sarah on behalf of Amanda
Office closure dates – Our office will be closing at midday on Thursday 21 December and reopening on Monday 8 January.
Touch Compass presents AIGA at Auckland Arts Festival March 2024
AIGA (the Samoan word for family/whanau) is a World Premiere of a new ground-breaking Disability-led, Pasifika-led work of theatre exploring personal identity, life’s struggles and triumphs, family and desire. Details were provided in 24 November update.
25 to 31 May 2024, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland – International Council on English Braille 8th General Assembly
2024 Activity Deafblind International Youth Network (DbIYN)
Monday 30 September to Friday 4 October in Disneyland Paris.
Expression of Interest: Please contact email@example.com.
Ongoing – Entertainment with Able
Able is a not-for-profit organisation working towards a more inclusive Aotearoa, believing everyone should be able to access news, entertainment and culture. Funded by NZ On Air, they’re Aotearoa’s leading provider of media access services, including captioning services, subtitling and audio description.
Listings are available at the following browser links.
A link to Able’s website to subscribe to the weekly newsletter with listings and picks of the week follows.
Deafblind Association New Zealand access to TellMe
End of report and this week’s update.
Taringa Turi Kāpō Rōpū
Deafblind Association New Zealand