This trip was a whole new experience for Jamie as Auslan is Jamie’s second language and she was nervous about learning international sign language. Although the trip was nerving and out of Jamie’s comfort zone, when she came back Jamie was so glad he went.
Jamie shares his experience below.
This camp had over 120 participants from more than 40 different countries come together for one week at the CREPS Ile de France site of Châtenay-Malabry, just 40mins outside of Paris.
We attended lectures and workshops covering topics such as human rights, empowerment, deaf ecosystem and media. We also had a lecture from Colin Allen – president of the World Federation of the Deaf.
The team building activities were a fantastic opportunity to develop leadership skills, teamwork, meet new people and make new friends.
Over the course of the week, we worked on a project called “Red Lead”. Countries were grouped based on their location and had to come up with an idea for a project. As the Oceania group, our project focused on encouraging more Deaf youth from other Oceania countries such as Fiji, Vanuatu and PNG to get involved in future WFD camps. At this youth camp there were only two Oceania countries – Australia and NZ – so our aim is to get more Oceania countries involved and help empower young Deaf from all over the Oceania region.
This camp involved people from all over the world… so how did we communicate?
We communicated through International Sign Language (ISL). All of the lectures were presented in ISL so I had to learn fast! This was a great learning experience for me and now I’ve adopted some ISL signs that I loved.
The WFDYS Camp was an experience that I will remember and cherish forever. I met so many wonderful people from all over the world who are incredibly passionate about empowering young Deaf and this in itself is truly inspirational. I also got to do some sightseeing in Paris and walk on the Eiffel Tower which was pretty cool too.