Bucharest, June 27th, 2022
The Foundation Sense International Romania has launched today the project The Voice of People with Deafblindness in Romania. June 27th is The International Day of People with Deafblindness, celebrated worldwide to draw attention upon the rights of people with deafblindness.
People with deafblindness in Romania represent an extremely vulnerable group, who are marginalized, isolated, and suffer from inequalities and social exclusion. The combination of the two impairments, visual and hearing, raises barriers in accessing services of all kinds, given the major difficulties in communication, orientation and mobility, in accessing information, as well as the lack of interpreters specialised in deafblindness.
According to international estimates from 2018, the prevalence of deafblindness is 0.2-2% of the population, meaning between 40,000 – 400,000 people affected in Romania.
Our project, The Voice of People with Deafblindness in Romania, aims to lay the groundwork and increase the capacity of a group of people with deafblindness to become a voice capable of fighting for their rights, through meetings meant to empower them and provide them with the tools for self-representation, aiming at establishing a representative association of people with deafblindness.
To ensure their access to the services they need, the project will train a group of sign language interpreters to specialise in deafblindness, a field that interpreters currently have little knowledge of. In parallel, the project will increase the level of awareness, though national campaigns dedicated to improved knowledge and understanding of deafblindness.
Sense International Romania will support people with deafblindness cu have a voice, to be seen and heard, gaining the capacity to advocate for the social inclusion of the entire group of people with deafblindness in Romania.
Project implemented by Sense International Romania in partnership with Sense International UK with the financial support of the Active Citizens Fund Romania, programme funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA Grants 2014-2021.
About Sense Internațional România
Sense International Romania is a Romanian organisation established in 2001 with the aim to improve the life of people with deafblindness and multisensory impairments in our country. SIR is the only organisation in Romania actively fighting for the rights of people with deafblindness. Through national level programmes that promote the early intervention foe babies born with sensory impairments, the education of children with deafblindness/MSI and the provision of vocational services, SIR manages to bring a change for the better in the life of hundreds of people with this type of disability. Our field of interest is represented by 4 major strategic directions: promoting the rights of people with deafblindness, health, education and social inclusion.
About Active Citizens Fund Romania
The Active Citizens Fund Romania programme is funded through the EEA Grants 2014-2021. The overall objective of the Grants is to reduce economic and social disparities, and to strengthen bilateral relations between 15 beneficiary countries and the Donor States (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway). The programme is administered by a consortium composed of Civil Society Development Foundation, Romanian Environmental Partnership Foundation, Resource Center for Roma Communities, PACT Foundation and Frivillighet Norge, acting as Fund Operator designated by FMO – Financial Mechanism Office of the EEA and Norway Grants. The objectives of the Active Citizens Fund Romania are to strengthen civil society and active citizenship and to empower vulnerable groups. With a total allocation of 46,000,000 euro, the programme pursues a long-term development of the civil society sector sustainability and capacity, stepping up its role in promoting democratic participation, active citizenship and human rights, while strengthening bilateral relations with organizations from the Donor States, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway. For more information about the Active Citizens Fund in Romania, please go to www.activecitizensfund.ro. For more information about the EEA and Norway Grants, go to www.eeagrants.org.