Sign language group of Kyoto celebrates 50th anniversary of establishment

Members practice in sign language for the special event.
(photo: http://www.kyoto-np.co.jp/)

June 20, 2013

The sign language group named "Horned Owl" in Kyoto-shi, Kyoto Prefecture celebrated the 50th anniversary of foundation. It is the oldest in the existing sign language circles across the whole country.

The group will hold a commemorative ceremony in Kyoto-shi on June 23, and all the past chairmen will give a talk to look back upon five decades there.

Nakajima* Chiyomi* (中島千代美) who was a nurse of the Red Cross' Second Hospital of Kyoto started the sign language group in 1963. There was hardly a sign language interpreter those days, and it was a motive that communication was not effective between a Deaf patient and a doctor.

Nakajima called to Mukono* Kaichi* (向野嘉一), 85, who is a sign-language interpreting expert, and twelve members began to learn sign language.

They had a goal to "become a Deaf's good friend", and have appealed for the discrimination abolition and the improvement in a Deaf's life in cooperation with the Kyoto City Association of the Deaf.

A branch is located in each division of the city now, and about 400 members learn sign language once a week, or plan an exchange event with the Deaf community.


Japanese source:
http://www.kyoto-np.co.jp/local/article/20130620000056


*Note: The Japanese name is usually in order: one's last name comes first, and then the first name comes next. 



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