GNAD:  Ghana National Association Of The Deaf

Strengthening the Disability Movement in Ghana through advocacy and capacity building – (GNAD-DANIDA PROJECT)

This is DANIDA funded project currently in the second phase (2010-2013) and covering the following areas; Sefwi Wiawso, Juabeso (Western Region), Dormaa, Asutifi and kenyasi (Brong Ahafo Region). The rest include; Lawra (Upper West), Bongo (Upper east) Saboba and Nanumba North district (Northern Region). The main objective is to strengthen the Disability Movement in Ghana through advocacy and capacity building.

The joint project includes the leading disability organizations in Ghana and their Danish counterparts, namely; the Ghana National Association of the Deaf (GNAD) Ghana Federation of the Disabled, the Ghana Blind Union, and the Ghana Society of the Physically Disabled, the Danish Association of the Deaf (DDL), the Danish association of the Blind (DAB) and the Danish people Organization of Denmark (DPOD).

The GNAD component of the initiative is geared towards advocacy for official recognition of sign language and improvement of deaf education in the country. It also involves advocacy and sign language training for deaf members in the selected districts.

DEAF Information and Communication Access ImprovemENT (DICAP)

DICAP is part of the Mwananchi – Ghana Programme, an evidence based research project funded by UKAID through the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) of the United Kingdom, and managed in Ghana by the Participatory Development Associates (PDA). There are over 8 NGOs across Ghana implementing interventions to remove information and communication barriers to governance i.e. the ordinary people (Mwananchi) holding government/leadership accountable to the tenets of good governance.

The GNAD intervention is a project titled “Deaf Information and Communication Access Improvement Project – DICAP” which seeks to bridge the communication barrier between the hearing and the deaf for the purpose of the total inclusion of the Deaf in the socio-economic development process of the nation.

The project beneficiary areas are the Ga East Municipality and the Ho Municipality. DICAP seeks to bring Interlocutors (i.e. the media, civil society, elected representatives, traditional authorities, and government) together for the purposes of good governance.

Under DICAP, a delicate combination of Advocacy (at both national and local level) and sign language training and development will be used to empower the deaf to be able to fully take part in the national development process. The project duration is a year i.e. from August 2010 to July 2011 during which; sign language will be developed (i.e. improve the level of members, and teach the staff of key institutions in the target municipalities to improve access), advocate for deaf rights both at the national and local level, partner with the media to educate the general public deafness and its related issues, train the executives of the beneficiary municipalities in advocacy etc.

Sustainable LivelIhood Training FOR DEAF Women

GNAD received funding from the African Women’s Development Fund in May 2010 to training Deaf women in sustainable economic livelihood activities. To date, women in the southern sector of the country have received training in hairdressing, entrepreneurship, cosmetics production, and beads production. The project is on-going, and second phase will focus on training in the northern sector of the country in sustainable economic livelihood activities.

VSO – GNAD HIV/AIDS Awareness Project

GNAD received funding from the Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) to implement a mini tailored HIV/AIDS Awareness Project for the Deaf in the three Northern Regions of Ghana between January and February 2011.

The project beneficiary Districts were the Lawra District in the Upper West Region, the Bongo District in the Upper East Region, and the Nanumba North and the Saboba Districts in the Northern Region. A team made up of a coordinator, a sign language interpreter and transport and logistics officer from Accra, joined a team of two community health nurses and a local interpreter; met with the GNAD membership in each of the Districts to brief them on current trends in HIV/AIDS management.

A sign language based comprehensive drama on HIV/AIDS management was screened after the presentation by the community Health nurses to give a more practical meaning to the presentation for the target audience. A voluntary counseling and test clinic was also run in all the Districts for participants to know their status and adopt the necessary measures. This was necessary because the Deaf usually do not benefit from the mainstream mass public education on HIV/AIDS because of the communication barrier.