9th World Deaf Golf Championship scheduled in Japan for 2012

The World Deaf Golf Federation held the representative meeting in Perth, Australia on Sept. 28 and decided to hold the 9th World Deaf Golf Championship in Tsu CC, Mie Prefecture in October, 2012. It will be the first championship to take place in Asia.

The World Deaf Golf Championship is held once every two years. The last was held in Perth this year and the next will be in Saint Andrews, UK. There will be individual games and group ones.

Source: http://sportsnavi.yahoo.co.jp/golf/headlines/dom_m/20080928-00000056-kyodo_sp-spo.html

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The reason why Tsu Country Club in Tsu City, Mie Prefecture, was decided as the venue of the 9th World Deaf Golf Championship in 2012 was Tsu CC was evaluated that it has held the annual national sports meeting for persons with disabilities for 14 years.

The rule of deaf golf games is basically the same as that of regular golf ones. However, the ascertainment of OB, etc. is informed with the flag.

Tsu CC has held golf games for persons with disabilities on November 3, a national holiday, every year with the help from volunteers. The Japan Deaf Association asked Tsu CC to be the site for the international deaf golf game, which it consented willingly.

At the representative meeting of the World Deaf Golf Federation held in Perth in Australia at the end of last month, the Japanese representative appealed that Mie Prefecture was the "Hometown of Japan" as the move of a shrine of Ise Jingu Shrine is scheduled in 2013. The invitation from Japan as the host won ten votes from 13 member countries, and thus the invitation was approved.

Shiori Koike, the owner of Tsu CC, is pleased with the result and said that meeting with people was a pleasure. "We will make the Deaf Golf Championship a good one."

Source: The Chunichi Shimbun, Oct. 07, 2008

The first training center for service dogs founded

Hearing dogs, as well as guide dogs and service dogs, have been allowed to accompany with persons with disabilities in facilities by law in 2002.

The hearing dogs react on a sound necessary for living such as buzzers and fire alarms, and call their deaf owners. It is more difficult for the hearing dog to have both independence and obedience than the guide dog and service dog that follow the owner's instruction. The hearing dogs are very fewer. It is said that the training of hearing dogs has started in Japan in the 1980's.

The construction of "the hearing dog and service dog training center" was recently completed by the Hearing Dogs Society in Miyata-mura, Nagano Prefecture. It was built next to the Miyata Villager Hall. It is said that it is the first kind in Japan by designing a whole barrier-free building as a training facility for hearing dogs and service dogs.

A two-wooden-story building with 489 square meter in total that was built on site of about 600 square meters. There are a training room, a bathroom for the trained dogs, and the health care room. An outdoors training space (1,560 square meters) will be planned.

The total project cost was about 200 million yen. Though it was covered by a subsidy of the Japan Keirin Association and donations, the capital of 45.6 million yen is needed to set up the outdoors training space.

The society is loaning the person with disability the hearing dog or the service dog free of charge. It will work on the training of proper dogs, aiming at bringing up 5-10 dogs every year in the future. Also a school for trainers who train service dogs is scheduled to be established on the center next February.

Source: Mainichi Shimbun, Sept. 27, 2008

Regional disaster prevention course held

The regional disaster prevention course was held in the prefectural exchange plaza for the persons with disabilities in Tokushima City, western part of Japan, on September 24.

This course was sponsored by the Prefectural Social Welfare Corporation that manages the exchange plaza. It intended to get people prepared for disasters including the Nankai earthquake, which would occur in the near future.

About 30 people participated in the course. A staff from the Prefectural Disaster Prevention Center explained the method of applying for an earthquake-proof diagnosis on houses and the phone voice-mail service for the disaster, etc.

There was a question from the floor. The phone voice-mail service would not be available to deaf persons, and then the system that uses text messages was introduced.

For lunchtime, the emergency food was served. Fumi Ushida (61), a certified dietitian, explained how to cook the four items, including rice, curry roux. One of the participants said he had the food for the first time. "The curry was unexpectedly delicious. I had an image of the food like the biscuits, but this kind of the emergency food would be satisfactory at the disaster."

A lifesaving course was also offered in the afternoon. The topic was how to use the AED (automatic external defibrillator).


Source: Mainichi Shimbun, Sept. 25, 2008

Emergency text message service system gains about 700 registrations

In Septmenber, most of cities nationwide in Japan take place various events or offer emergency courses related to disaster prevention, because the largest earthquake attacked the Tokyo metropolitan area on Sept. 1, 1923, as well as natural disasters such as thyphoon.

Tanabe City in Wakayama Prefecture, western part of Japan, had started "The Disaster Prevention Text Message System" on August 1. The registration for the service reached 736 in one month from the beginning of the system. The City Disaster Prevention Measures Office said that the number of registration still goes up on. "We hope it will be more in the future".

The Disaster Prevention Text messages System delivers information broadcasted by a city disaster prevention wireless to the cellular phone and the computer.

The system was introduced with the purpose to back up what hearing persons would have missed, through the city disaster prevention wireless, as well as deaf persons.

Text messages are sent out for warning such as the heavy rain, floods, and tsunami (tidal waves), living information on suspension of the water supply and the traffic, etc., and search request from the police.

So far 15 text messages have been delivered, except the fire broadcasting and broadcasting various events. The service is free of charge, and prior registration is requested.


Source: Kii Minpou, Sept. 24, 2008

Driving school offers the course to deaf students in JSL

The Futenma Driving School offers the preparatory course in sign language at the Okinawa School for the Deaf in order to help the deaf students acquire a driving license.

A 16-hour preparatory course is provided free of charge besides regular training. Yasuo Tamaki, an instructor from the driving school explains words or terms and the sentence that the deaf students usually get confused in the written examination.

The principal of the Futenma Driving School encouraged, "We want the deaf students to get the driving license and to expand work and the range of the action".

This year is the fourth year and five students are taking a preparatory course. On September 11 when the course started, one of them, a senior in the High School, said that he would study hard as he wanted to do the work related to the car."

The Driving School started to accept the deaf students around in 1984 when they were ready to graduate from the Kitashiro School for the Deaf, the former school of the Okinawa School for the Deaf.

Between 1964 and 1965 many deaf or hard of hearing infants were born due to the rubella across Okinawa, a southern island of Japan. Because of a great number of the deaf children the Kitashiro School for the Deaf was established.

Mr. Tamaki (59) and others instructed the students through written communication at the beginning. Later they learnt sign language and developed a sign language textbook necessary for the training. According to the Driving School, 100 deaf students or more have acquired the driving license until now.

Mr. Tamaki explains that the questions in the written examination usually confuse the deaf students because of the difficulty to understand Japanese, the spoken language. Therefore, a preparatory course has been taught for more detailed guide.

Starting this June, the wide mirror is required during driving a car by the revised Traffic and Road Law. The deaf person can get a driving license regardless of the level of hearing. Previously the deaf person was required to take a hearing test: whether to hear the sound of the horn of 90 decibels ten meters away with the use of the hearing aid."

Mr. Tamaki said that in the past many deaf students failed because of the hearing test. "I wished the law would have been revised earlier. I am willing to continue my help to the deaf students so that they can get a job after school."


Source: Ryukyu Shimpo, Sept, 21, 2008

A workshop for the deaf on emergency held in Tokyo

A two-day workshop for the deaf on emergency was held in Fuchu City, Tokyo, on September 12-13, 2008. The participants eagerly learnt how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED) with the help of interpreting and note taking.

The workshop was held for families with seniors and/or infants who needed care, as part of the special workshop series that the Fuchu Fire Station has conducted with the day since September 7.

Twenty eight deaf persons participated in the workshop for two days in total, learning how to do with the first aid and an artificial respiration, how to call an ambulance by writing the emergency telephone number, "191," on the ground, etc., with the instructions by a supervising staff from the Tokyo Emergency Society and volunteers.


Source : The Yomiuri Shimbun, September 16, 2008